Category Archives: movies

Vikings recap: ‘Homeland’

This week’s episode of Vikings is titled “Homeland,” but do any of the characters really have such a place? The sons of Ragnar Lothbrok have scattered across the world, following their ambitions far away from a Kattegat much changed since their youth. King Harald returns to his people a conquering hero, but the kingdom he imagines for himself is far removed from the mudstreets he leads Astrid down. Aethelwulf and his family fled their own home when they fled their patriarch, live now as nomad royals reclaiming their land one siege at a time. And Floki is a man without a family, his own history erased by time’s passage: He’s never been further from his people, and has never felt more peace.

In such company, the affairs of King Harald and Astrid feel unexpectedly light, a playful chapter between sagas, almost a rom-com. Harald is one of the great conquering warriors of his time, yet has no luck in love. He’s carried Astrid away from home, he has offered her a Queenship, has declared her “part of my dream” to his assembled followers. She is not impressed; when he follows her to the bedchamber, she breaks his nose. One of the interesting running ideas in Vikings is how ambition can radically change a character’s mind, cause them to betray a close friend or ally with a sworn enemy. Astrid won’t turn on Lagertha so easily, it seems. She has her own ambitions, though: Could Harald be a means to an end?

Astrid represents the ascendant generation of Viking culture, someone raised on the stories of Ragnar Lothbrok. She seeks her own glories. So, too, do Ragnar’s sons, rejoicing in their victory at York but preparing their own strategies for how to continue on from that victory. Ubbe has carried forward his father’s great dream of farming here on this island across the sea — of extending the homeland of the Lothbrok clan.

Ivar’s plans are different. In a stunning, rainswept battle sequence, Ivar leaves his safe perch to ride his chariot into battle. It ain’t pretty: Knocked off onto the ground, he’s left cowering next to his chariot, covered in an enemy’s blood, facing down the whole assault force of the Saxons. Yet “cowering” is the wrong word. “Don’t you know who I am?” he screams at them in his own tongue. “You can’t kill me!” Arrows fire at him, one embedding in his own cold dead legs, and still he laughs, declaring his name over and over. Here is a boy almost left for dead by a father who only eventually seemed to notice him; a boy stricken with disability in a culture that values great mythic strength. And so he has never felt more at home than in the deathstorm of a bloody battle, staring enemies in the face.

He makes eye contact with Bishop Heahmund, who seems to acknowledge something in the young Viking warlord. Heahmund is a devoted Christian, already begging the Lord’s forgiveness for the violence he must undertake. Yet he’s also a man of violence — of appetites the Bible declares sinful. He fights for a god who deplores fighting, wandering across his religion’s moral spectrum. Perhaps he looks at Ivar and sees a kindred spirit: someone who will never quite be at home anywhere.

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The battle ends, and York remains Viking. The sons of Ragnar have a difference of opinion. Ubbe takes Hvitserk to meet with the Saxons, offering peace in exchange for land. Perhaps he doesn’t know that they tried this before, the Vikings and the Men of Wessex promising a pact of friendship. Perhaps he knows, but has the familiar dream of so many young people: This Time Will Be Different. Heahmund beats him and sends the brothers back to Ivar, who laughs at their silly hopes. Ubbe sets off for home, refusing to acknowledge his younger brother’s status as chieftain. But Hvitserk remains behind. Like Halfdan on his jaunt with Bjorn, Hvitserk has taken for a compass the ambition of a greater man. “Everyone is with me,” says Ivar, in a moment more triumphant than any of his military victories: The runt of the litter become alpha wolf.

But not everyone is with him. In a distant strange landscape, Floki wanders through dream and dreamlike reality, seeing visions supernatural and incredibly natural. We here in the present day may know the land he wanders through — they have excellent seafood and hot springs! — but Floki experiences this new place as somewhere between heaven and hell. It is the land of the gods, yet empty. It is tantalizing, mysterious, unknowable. He speaks to the Allfather and thanks him for finding his humble servant a good place to die. But although Floki is a devoted fundamentalist, he is also a spiritual soul open to new discoveries. Recall his fascination with the Mosque, his moral confusion over Ragnar’s love for his despicable monk. So Floki opens his eyes to a new decision. He will not die. “I will live here with the gods!” he declares. A note of optimism in a brutal time: Far beyond the most distant borders of the known world, someone has found home.


James Cameron and Sigourney Weaver tease underwater adventures in ‘Avatar 2’

Pro tip: If you’re going to work with James Cameron, you’d better be prepared to get wet. Both onscreen and off, the filmmaker has long been fascinated by exploring the ocean depths, whether he’s recreating the sinking of the Titanic or exploring the Mariana Trench in his own submersible. The actors he employs frequently have to take prolonged dips as well … whether they like it or not. For Titanic, Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio memorably risked hypothermia while shooting the watery climax in freezing temperatures. And the entire ensemble of Cameron’s 1989 film The Abyss, including Ed Harris and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, took a week-long course in underwater diving to prepare for what proved to be a protracted and strenuous shoot.


Now it’s the Avatar 2 cast’s turn to get hooked on Cameron’s longtime passion. Speaking with Yahoo Entertainment recently, Sigourney Weaver — who will return to Pandora in the top-secret sequel to the 2009 hit, albeit as a different character — reveals that her preproduction training included a crash course in freediving. “At least on land, I’m up to four minutes holding my breath, ” the actress boasted. “And I’m now scuba certified as well as in the midst of becoming an accomplished free diver. Once I completed my scuba course, Jim said to me, ‘The 75 percent of the world that’s underwater is now part of what your world gets to be.’”

In a separate conversation, Cameron confirmed early reports that Pandora’s ocean environments will play a major role in an ambitious slate of films that will include four installments to be released between 2020 and 2025, with an estimated $1 billion price tag. And, in fact, official casting announcements for the sequels now being shot make mention of the planet’s water-based Na’vi tribe, the Metkayina Clan. “The thing you have to remember is that we’re not doing underwater photography; we’re doing underwater performance capture,” Cameron says, adding that they’re already shooting underwater sequences in a small tank, with plans to graduate to a bigger one in January. “Nobody’s ever done that before. Just like when I was making The Abyss and Titanic, I’m way out there in the wilderness doing new stuff,” he said. “I’d be totally lost if I hadn’t done those two films and had a good sense of what works and what doesn’t work. All of that previous work was the foundation for doing the Avatar sequels.”



Why Would Luke Want to End the Jedi?

“It’s time for the Jedi to end.”

These are the words of Luke Skywalker, some of the first we’ve heard him say since “Return of the Jedi.” He didn’t speak in 2015’s “The Force Awakens,” and according to the lore, he’s been hiding out on a remote world home to the first Jedi Temple for quite some time.

Why would he, the last Jedi Master, say a thing like that?

This is the question we all hope will be answered in December’s release of “The Last Jedi,” the eighth installment of the Skywalker Saga. But more than a few clues are scattered across the “Star Wars” canon, and the answer might be easier to find than we thought.

Perhaps the first thing we need to understand is Luke’s journey, starting with “The Empire Strikes Back” and how we can assume his journey during the events of “The Force Awakens” played out. In “The Empire Strikes Back,” Luke can see the pain and suffering of Princess Leia and Han Solo through the Force, even before it happens. He ignores the advice of his masters to remain in his hidden training on Dagobah and goes to confront Darth Vader in order to save them. This decision puts him on the brink of the dark side, but he is able to save his friends sooner or later. Luke is so much more powerful now, so many years later, we have to assume he could have interceded on Han’s behalf when Han’s son, Ben Solo (who took on the name Kylo Ren), ran him through with a lightsaber.

The question we have to ask is why? Luke knew his best friend was going to die at the hands of Ben Solo, Luke’s nephew and former student, so why did he still let it happen?

I think the answer lies in Luke’s finishing move in “Return of the Jedi.” At the climax of the film, when he should have launched into an impressive battle against the emperor, he chooses nonviolence. He throws away his lightsaber and lets the emperor have his way with him. It’s only through the compassion of his father that he’s able to survive. This act brings Anakin Skywalker back to the light side.

Thanks to two new stories that have been released in 2017, the first a short story in “The Legends of Luke Skywalker,” and the second the single player story of “Star Wars: Battlefront II,” we catch glimpses of this new Luke Skywalker. He’s helping Imperials, people he would have shot at indiscriminately before his new enlightenment. He doesn’t care what life-form is around and needs help, he shows that life-form compassion.

This nonviolent trajectory for Luke Skywalker fits with George Lucas’ concept of an ideal world. In 2012, while on “CBS Morning News,” Lucas talked about how compassion should be the overriding driver of government and societal structure: “[We come] out and say that we care about everyone in our society and what we want to do is do what’s best for everybody in the society. We want to build the best society where everybody gets the best possible life they can possibly have.”

In “The Force Awakens,” when Han Solo tells us that Luke had a student turn dark and kill the other students in his charge, Luke might have to rethink what that compassion means. How can he kill his nephew when his finishing move is love and compassion? Of course, this split forces Luke to do a lot of soul-searching, and what better place to seek out than the origin of the Jedi to see how they grappled with their problems?

One of the earliest lessons learned in “Star Wars” is that violence is cyclical, just as Greek mythology long ago pointed out. It was foretold to Cronus, the father of Zeus, that his children would be his undoing because of this circular violence. The damage he did to his father would likewise be done to him. And he couldn’t stop it.

This idea appears in Christian theology, too. In Matthew 26:52, we see a passage that reads: “‘Put your sword back in its place,’ Jesus said to him, ‘for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.'”

Luke put his sword away once and saved his father. After his nephew’s turn to the dark side, it makes sense that he’d put away his sword again. And something tells me that Rey isn’t going to find a very helpful Luke Skywalker at the beginning of “The Last Jedi” because of this nonviolent coda.


Wonder Woman 2 promises another “great love story”

Following the slight disappointment that was Justice League, it’s safe to say that Wonder Woman is still our favourite DC superhero movie of 2017, so of course we’re already trying to piece together details of what to expect from the sequel.

We’ve already heard that Wonder Woman 2 looks like it’s going to be set in the ’80sand follow a Cold War narrative, and that it’s likely to take place in the United States.


But in a new interview on Variety’s Playback podcast, director Patty Jenkins teased some of the finer points of the storyline she’s currently planning – which includes another “great love story”.

Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot attend the premiere of Warner Bros. Pictures' 'Wonder Woman'

“I did very much thematically want to get to love – because that’s what she stands for – and the complexity of what we’re facing,” Jenkins said of the first film, and what she wanted to explore in it.

“These were big themes, like [Wonder Woman] stands for love and truth, which is particularly important right now.”

Patty Jenkins also sketched out the broad thematic themes she’s planning for the new film, and it seems like love is on the cards once again.

“It’s really still going to other values of hers, and a similar formula insofar as making a great, enjoyable fun movie but that ultimately in its third act turns some very big issues, and a very big experience that will aim to have slightly more weight and profundity than it has to have.


Crackle Sets Premiere Date for 50 Cent-Produced Drama ‘The Oath’

Crackle announced the premiere date for the upcoming drama series “The Oath” on Thursday. 

The series, which hails from executive producer Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson,” will debut on Crackle on March 8. The series stars Ryan Kwanten, Cory Hardrict, Arlen Escarpeta, Katrina Law, J.J. Soria, and “Game of Thrones” alum Sean Bean.

The 10-episode series explores a world of gangs made up of those sworn to protect and defend. It sheds light on corrupt and secret societies that are nearly impossible to join, but once inside, members will do what they must to protect each other from enemies on the outside and from within their own ranks.

Created by Joe Halpin, who worked as a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department deputy in South Central for 17 years, 12 of which as an undercover officer, the series looks at the complicated dynamics in these organizations and documents the lives of those willing to risk it all, to have it all.


Jackson executive produces via his G-Unit Film & Television Inc.. Todd Hoffman and Dennis Kim of Storied Media Group, and Anne Clements also executive produce. Halpin serves as writer and showrunner. The series is directed by Jeff T. Thomas and Luis Prieto.


Crackle Sets Premiere Date for 50 Cent-Produced Drama ‘The Oath’

‘Fear the Walking Dead’: What Morgan’s Arrival Means for AMC’s Zombie Universe

“Don’t cross the streams.”

The forces responsible for AMC’s The Walking Dead universe have long subscribed to Egon Spengler’s sage wisdom, keeping the flagship zombie drama and spinoff Fear the Walking Dead separated by both distance and time. Given the news about Walking Dead veteran Lennie James’ upcoming series regular role on Fear the Walking Deadit now looks like the golden Ghostbusters rule has been vaporized — and in the process, the two shows look set to overlap in time, if not space.

Heading into the Talking Dead announcement about the Fear and Walking Dead crossover specifics, most fans were set on the theory that Abraham Ford, the late and great bruiser played with relish by Michael Cudlitz, would serve as the bridge between the two sides of the AMC zombie apocalypse. After all, before joining up with Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and the rest of the gang, Abraham originally hailed from Texas — the same place where Fear the Walking Dead is heading in season four, with production now underway in Austin. Through three seasons, Fear the Walking Dead has told a story set years and years before the current events of The Walking Dead, roughly around the same time as season two of the flagship series. With that in mind, it made sense for Abraham to appear on Fear, as his character didn’t link up with Lincoln’s Rick until the tail end of season four.

Sadly, those Abraham dreams have been smashed to smithereens, not unlike how the barbed-wired baseball bat known as Lucille obliterated the late Sergeant Ford’s skull in the seventh season premiere of The Walking Dead. Instead, another iconic face from the original series will make the leap over to Fear: Morgan, the first major character viewers ever met in the Walking Dead universe following Rick Grimes, at least in terms of the individuals who are still alive.

But how does Morgan appearing in the current Fear the Walking Dead timeline make sense, given what we know about the character’s history? Here’s where it gets interesting: it doesn’t make sense — unless Fear the Walking Dead is about to experience a massive leap forward in time. (The live stream of James’ first day on set was nothing more than the actor walking to the makeup trailer.)

We don’t know everything about Morgan Jones, but we do know his apocalyptic history in vivid detail:

• We first met Morgan in the Walking Dead pilot, seeking refuge in Rick’s hometown when the lawman first awakens from his coma and into the world of the dead. Morgan’s wife, Jenny, had already turned at this point. Morgan’s son, Duane, was still alive.

• After Rick left Morgan in the pilot, viewers heard nothing from the Joneses again until season three’s “Clear,” written by current Walking Dead showrunner (and Fear the Walking Dead executive producer) Scott Gimple. Years had passed at this point, and in that time, Duane died thanks to Morgan’s inability to kill his zombified wife. Morgan remained in Rick’s hometown all of this time, and remains there still after Rick, Carl (Chandler Riggs) and Michonne (Danai Gurira) hit the road with enough weapons to fight against Woodbury.


‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Awakens Social Media Buzz Again

Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” and Disney-Pixar’s “The Incredibles 2” dominated social media again last week, according to media-measurement firm comScore and its PreAct service.

The ninth “Star Wars” movie generated 121,000 new conversations last week after airing a TV spot on Nov. 20 and releasing several new images throughout the week. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” has pulled in more than 4.12 million new conversations three weeks before its Dec. 15 launch. Early tracking released on Nov. 21 showed the tentpole could open in the $200 million range at the domestic box office.

Directed by Rian Johnson, the movie picks up where 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” left off. It stars returning cast members Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Andy Serkis. The new cast members include Kelly Marie Tran, Laura Dern, and Benicio del Toro. It’s the final film role for Fisher, who died last December.

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“The Incredibles 2” earned 117,000 new conversations last week following the Nov. 18 release of its first teaser trailer. The animated comedy is the sequel to the 2004 original with Holly Hunter, Craig T. Nelson, Sarah Vowell, and Samuel L. Jackson reprising their roles. The film is scheduled to be released on June 15.

Fox’s “Maze Runner: The Death Cure” produced 30,000 new conversations last week, two months before the Jan. 26 opening of the film — the finale of the “Maze Runner” sci-fi trilogy. The movie’s original release date has been delayed for nearly a year in order to allow star Dylan O’Brien to recover from injuries sustained during shooting.

Disney-Marvel’s “Avengers: Infinity War” drew 19,000 new conversations last week as anticipation begins to build for the May release of the tentpole, in which the Avengers team up with the “Guardians of the Galaxy” superheroes. The film, directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, was featured in four Vanity Fair covers on Nov. 26.


‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Awakens Social Media Buzz Again

The Strangers: Prey at Night (2018) Official Trailer HD

U.S. charges Iranian hacker for stealing unaired episodes of hit HBO shows

While it didn’t dampen enthusiasm for everyone’s favorite dragon-oriented political drama, HBO certainly wasn’t happy when the major twists from the seventh season of its hottest show popped up online before they aired.

According to a newly released indictment, an Iranian man named Behzad Mesri faces charges for the hack. The document notes Mesri, who also goes by the alias “Skote Vahshat,” has worked for the Iranian military on hacks targeting Israel and that he belongs to an Iran-based hacking collective known as the Turk Black Hat. Mesri can’t be arrested now, but if he moved between countries that could become an option.

The indictment alleges that Mesri began his efforts to hack HBO in May 2017, feeling out the network for a way onto its networks. It goes on to describe how between May and July of this year, Mesri hacked into the accounts of multiple HBO employees, using that access to steal files, including episodes of “Barry,” “Ballers,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Room 104” and “The Deuce,” as well as scripts from Game of Thrones and confidential HBO financial documents.

The case is being pursued by the Southern District of New York’s Complex Frauds and Cybercrime Unit, with Assistant United States Attorneys Timothy T. Howard, Richard Cooper and Jonathan Cohen leading the prosecution.


“American ingenuity and creativity is to be cultivated and celebrated — not hacked, stolen, and held for ransom,” Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim said of the case.

“For hackers who test our resolve in protecting our intellectual property — even those hiding behind keyboards in countries far away —  eventually, winter will come.”


US charges Iranian hacker for stealing unaired episodes of hit HBO shows

Jason Momoa defends Justice League from critics

Justice League has quickly become one of the most divisive movies of the year, critics having lampooned the blockbuster while certain fans have adamantly defended the team-up.

When the same happened to Batman v Superman, the movie’s actors gave some varying responses when questioned about the negative reviews, spawning the famous Sadfleck meme. Jason Momoa won’t be giving any such reaction. 

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“I try to stay the f**k away from what people say,” the Aquaman actor told EW. “Some of my friends said, ‘Justice League isn’t doing well’ and it kind of bummed me out. But I didn’t want to look it up. I don’t want to look up the bad and the negativity. I don’t think that’s useful; it doesn’t help.”

Momoa — who plays one of the better-received characters — added how he’s seen Justice League twice and adores the movie. 


Charlie Hunnam Is Still Traumatized by His Fifty Shades of Grey Experience

Those who still haven’t seen Fifty Shades of Grey can count actor Charlie Hunnam among their ranks—though he has a slightlydifferent reason for avoiding the raunchy romance franchise starring Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan. In an interview with Elle, via E!, Hunnam revealed that he still hasn’t watched the first movie because it reminds him of a chaotic time in his career.

“I developed a friendship with [director Sam Taylor-Johnson],” Hunnam explained in the interview. “But that was a somewhat traumatic experience for me. I didn’t want to open that wound.”

See, many moons ago, Hunnam was tapped to play Christian Grey, the suave billionaire who sweeps Johnson’s Anastasia off her feet. He was cast in the role in 2013, but eventually had to drop out of the project due to scheduling conflicts. So the part went to Dornan instead—but fans were still left wondering why Hunnam wouldn’t rearrange his schedule to fit in something with this kind of box-office potential.

Hunnam wouldn’t give a more detailed explanation of his rationale until a few years later, in a 2015 interview with V Man. There, Hunnam said that he was still working on Season 7 of Sons of Anarchy when he was cast in Fifty Shades and had signed on to do Guillermo Del Toro’s gothic romance Crimson Peak as well. Hunnam had given Del Toro his word that he’d star in the film, despite the fact that it was shooting around the same time as Fifty Shades. And much as a Lannister always pays his debts, a Hunnam never goes back on his word.


Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire

Having gone through a prototype version of the experience in that Glendale warehouse, it’s clear that this experience does more than just deliver on those lofty expectations. For mainstream audiences, Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire may be the first time virtual reality actually delivers on the Holodeck-esque potential it’s been promising all along.

Photo: The Void / ILMxLAB

Secrets of the Empire starts with a briefing. Groups of up to four guests are shown a video from Rogue One’s Cassian Andor (Diego Luna). There’s a piece of Imperial cargo that’s been brought to the planet Mustafar, he says, and while he was originally going to retrieve it, he’s now under attack. It’s up to the group of guests to go undercover as stormtroopers and get the job done. From there, audience members suit up with a custom head-mounted display, lightweight backpack computer, and a haptic vest, and step into an adjoining room. Pull down the headset, and the real world melts away: where other participants were a moment ago, stormtroopers now stand.

The storyline is exactly what any Star Warsfan would hope for: the group of participants infiltrate the base, get into some skirmishes, and after a couple of lucky escapes (and a big surprise), make their way out having more or less accomplished the mission. But what The Void does well is create the illusion of truly being in a virtual world by pairing physical sets, props, and sensations with the VR visuals. Secrets of the Empire uses that combination to ground the experience right from the beginning. As I stepped into a transport, K-2S0 (Alan Tudyk, also reprising his role) suggested I sit down on the ship’s bench — and sure enough, there was a physical bench waiting for me when I did. When I waved my hands in front of my face, there they were, clad in the white-and-black gloves of a stormtrooper. Moments later, when I stood on a skiff approaching the Imperial facility, I felt the heat from the lava below, while the smoky smell of Mustafar’s atmosphere filled my nostrils. Later, when engaged in a firefight with stormtroopers, I felt a sharp haptic buzz whenever I caught a stray blaster bolt — not painful, but not exactly pleasant, either.

There’s a tremendous amount of fun just in the pure discovery of the experience: the realization that I could chatter along with the people I was playing with (“I have a bad feeling about this”), or that there was a Han Solo-esque workaround to a puzzle that I couldn’t crack. But breaking it down into those kind of singular moments seems reductive, because more than anything else, Secrets of the Empire legitimately feels like starring in a Star Wars movie or TV show of your very own. Part of that is the length. From the briefing to the moment you remove the gear at the end, the experience runs roughly 30 minutes, so there’s some heft to it. Another component is the tactile reality that The Void creates, paired with the sense of independence that comes from being able to walk around a virtual location without any perceived restrictions or limitations. The Void uses design sleight of hand and misdirection to guide guests through relatively small physical spaces that feel massive and epic in the virtual world. It’s an illusion, but an incredibly effective one that creates a compelling sense of autonomy and agency.


The Dancer / La Danseuse (2017) – Trailer (English Subs)


The military springs into action when three gigantic, mutated monsters embark on a path of destruction.
Release date: April 20, 2018 (USA)
Director: Brad Peyton
Production company: New Line Cinema
Screenplay: Carlton Cuse, Ryan Engle, Ryan J. Condal
Producers: Dwayne Johnson, Brad Peyton, Beau Flynn

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation

In Sony Pictures Animation’s Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, join our favorite monster family as they embark on a vacation on a luxury monster cruise ship so Drac can take a summer vacation from providing everyone else’s vacation at the hotel. It’s smooth sailing for Drac’s Pack as the monsters indulge in all of the shipboard fun the cruise has to offer, from monster volleyball to exotic excursions, and catching up on their moon tans. But the dream vacation turns into a nightmare when Mavis realizes Drac has fallen for the mysterious captain of the ship, Ericka, who hides a dangerous secret that could destroy all of monsterkind.
Release date: July 13, 2018 (USA)
Director: Genndy Tartakovsky
Production company: Sony Pictures Animation
Budget: 65 million USD
Distributed by: Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group

Gangster Land Trailer #1 (2017)


The story of America’s most famous mobsters and their rise to power, GANGSTER LAND examines Al Capone’s ascension through the eyes of his second in command, “Machine Gun” Jack McGurn. Once an amateur boxer, McGurn is lured into the Italian mafia after the murder of his step-father. Upon joining, he rises swiftly through the ranks along with friend and eventual Boss, Capone. As the Italian mob becomes the most lucrative criminal organization in the country, tensions build with “Bugs” Moran and the Irish mob which ignites a brutal gang war culminating with the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.


Bumblebee: Transformers Spinoff’s Official Logo Goes Retro

Production on Transformers: Bumblebee, the first Transformers spin-off, has wrapped and star Hailee Steinfeld took to Instagram to unveil the first logo for the forthcoming film, which easily captures the ’80s setting of the project.

The logo, which you can see below, teases Bumblebee’s return to his 1980s Volkswagen Beetle form, and manages to capture the feel of The Iron Giant — a film producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura compared the spinoff to in previous interviews. The treatment is also, admittedly, a much different take than the logo that was reported back in May.

It’s worth noting that most films go through various versions of a logo before their theatrical release, so it’s entirely possible that the final logo will be much different when the film is released next year.

The Bumblebee spinoff will mark the first off-shoot from Michael Bay’s Transformers universe, which saw the most recent installment, Transformers: The Last Knight, released back in June. It’ll also mark the first live-action film for Knight, who made his directing debut with last year’s Kubo And The Two Strings. The film stars Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit), Jorge Lendeborg Jr. (Spider-Man: Homecoming) and wrestler-turned-actor John Cena.


Pokémon Fans Are Losing Their Minds At The End Of The New Movie

There is a weird thing about the new Pokémon movie that is kind of a spoiler, so if you’re sensitive to that stuff, look away. If you’re not, here is a room full of adults losing their shit over what happens at the end of the newest movie in the series, I Choose You! 


The iconic Pokémon, who has functioned as the series mascot since the late 1990s, has traditionally been unable to speak human languages. Like most other Pokémon, he could only repeat his own name.

But in a surreal sequence from Pokémon the Movie: I Choose You!, released in Japan in July and now in English, Pikachu tells his trainer and companion Ash Ketchum that he “always wants to be with you”.

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During one screening of the movie posted to Twitter, viewers reacted with audible gasps and alarm.

One muttered “What the fuck?” while a man can be heard to shout “No!”.

The distressing scene is said to be made more unsettling by Pikachu’s high-pitched voice.

Kate Bristol, the film’s English languge voice actor for Pikachu, said in a statementthat even other members of the cast found it “bizarre” and “super weird”.

The surprising dialogue has been widely interpreted as occurring during a dream sequence or hallucination inside the protagonist Ash Ketchum’s head.

“I think the literal circumstances under which Pikachu is ‘speaking’ are up to interpretation,” Bristol said. “I saw it as something in Ash’s mind. But it’s up to anyone. And it’s OK to think it’s super weird.

“I sat in the theatre with the rest of the cast while everyone shouted ‘what the fuck’ and I sat there laughing at how bizarre it all is, especially hearing my squeaky little voice come out of it.

“Personally, I did my best to mimic [Japanese voice actor] Ikue Otani as she is the master. This part in Japanese is adorable. At the end of the day Pokémon is a good time and I sure as hell enjoyed being a Pikachu for 0.5 seconds.”

The original Japanese release of the film contains a similar scene where Pikachu speaks Japanese, but has not prompted the same reaction.

The animated version of Pikachu first appeared in the Pokémon anime television series, which debuted in Japan on 1 April 1997, and has spawned numerous sequels and movies.

This all stemmed from the popularity of the original Pokémon video game, developed by Nintendo and Game Freak, released in 1996.

In North America, the game was released as Pokémon Red and Blue in 1998 and sparked a wave of Pokémon frenzy, becoming one of the world’s most popular gaming and television franchises.

In the animated series only one Pokémon – Meowth, a cat-like Pokémon who functions as an antagonist – has generally been acknowledged as being able to speak. 

Other Pokémon, including a different Pikachu in the 3DS game Great Detective Pikachu, have been depicted as speaking English, but these are not considered consistent with the canon of the series.


Ben Affleck confirms plans to quit Batman, looking for “cool way to segue out”

Ben Affleck is once again throwing doubt on the claim that he’s going to star in the standalone Bruce Wayne film The Batman. The Justice League star said in a recent interview with USA Today that he is “contemplating” doing the Matt Reeves directed film, which is said to be the start of a trilogy surrounding the character. 

Rumors that Affleck would not star in The Batman have abounded for months, beginning when he stepped out of the director’s chair for the film. Back in July, The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the studio was reportedly looking into plans to “gracefully” transition Affleck out of the role of Batman ahead of a planned trilogy about the character. Their source listed a number of ways in which Affleck could leave the part, including a few inspired by the comics.

Affleck refuted those rumors at San Diego Comic-Con, saying, “Let me be very clear. I am the luckiest guy in the world. Batman is the coolest f***ing part in any universe.” The actor later elaborated, saying that, with Reeves’ involvement, it would be crazy for him to quit the film. “With Matt Reeves doing it, I would be a f***ing ape on the ground for Matt Reeves,” he said.

Still, though, Affleck’s connection to the character continues to be a subject of discussion. His brother Casey ignited rumors once again earlier this fall by saying “he’s not going to do that movie.” Although Casey’s reps walked back his comments by saying Casey was just “having fun” during the interview where he made the big reveal, that also still raised questions about if Ben has been discussing the potential of stepping down with his family. 

Affleck’s comments to USA Today are sure to throw even more fuel on the fire. In the interview, the actor also dropped this very revealing quote: “You don’t do it forever, so I want to find a graceful and cool way to segue out of it.” This suggests that something like the upcoming Flashpoint film could be used to take his Batman out of the equation.

Although he was noncommittal on his future in the DCEU, Affleck did say that he thinks the world is in need of heroes today. “There’s a lot of stuff going on in the world, from natural to man-made disasters, and it’s really scary,” he said. “Part of the appeal of this genre is wish fulfillment: Wouldn’t it be nice if there was somebody who can save us from all this, save us from ourselves, save us from the consequences of our actions and save us from people who are evil?”

While Affleck’s future as the caped crusader is still very much in doubt, we do know for sure that he will take on the character again in Justice League, which hits theaters on Nov. 17.

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A ‘Hitman’ series is coming to Hulu from the creator of ‘John Wick’

Remember when Square Enix sold IO Interactive and the future of the Hitman franchise looked bleak? That continues to be the best thing that ever happened to the company and their most beloved series. Not only did they add yet more content to their award-winning episodic experiment, not only do they have another season/game in the works, they’re about to have a TV show.

Deadline reports that Fox is teaming up with Hulu to create a television series based on IO’s hit, man. (Sorry.) The pilot will be written by John Wick creator Derek Kolstad, who is also executive producing the series. That’s one promising sign that a live-action Hitman could really work this time. Another promising sign is that Hulu hopes to turn the show into a flagship series for the streaming network. That mean’s it’s more than just a cash grab. They’re more likely to give the show what it needs to actually be good.


The Hitman series doesn’t have the best history when it comes to live adaptations. 20th Century Fox previously released two Hitman movies, and both were abysmal. While many factors went into making Hitman and Hitman: Agent 47 that bad, their biggest sin, as a fan of the games, was that they didn’t understand what Hitman was all about. They took all the careful planning, the intricate assassinations, the dark humor, and the insane methods, and through it all away. They turned Hitman into two movies about a bald guy who shoots a lot of guns. That’s not what Hitman is. Hitman is learning your target’s movements, figuring out when they’re alone. Or if they’re never alone, it’s figuring out how to cause a horrific accident with no one suspecting it’s you. It’s carefully calculating every step and wildly improvising when your plan inevitably goes awry. If you can’t turn that into compelling live-action drama, I don’t know what’s wrong with you.

That’s where Kolstad’s involvement has me optimistic. Yes, the John Wick movies were big loud action flicks, but they had a craft that’s rare in those kinds of movies. Even with the tiniest bit of story, the movies made you care about a character nobody had ever heard of before. Those films displayed a mastery of pacing. The Hitman series will inevitably have its big action sequences, but I trust Kolstad to recognize that the build-up to those sequences is just as important, if not more so. And that it’s just as much fun to watch Agent 47 kill a bunch of dudes with a battle axe as it is to watch an intricate Rube Goldberg machine of death come together. That’s what I’m hoping for, anyway. Also, since a TV show, there may be fewer restrictions on what kinds of stories they can tell. And with a per-episode budget being much lower than a Hollywood film, that could force the show to get more creative with each assassination, rather than turning everything into a big action setpiece.

No word on a release date yet, but this is the perfect excuse to revisit some of your favorite Hitman games. The story of the series is said to be very close to the games’ mythology.


‘Wonder Woman 2’ Moved Up to November 2019

Warner Bros. has moved up Gal Gadot’s “Wonder Woman 2” six weeks to Nov. 1, 2019, from Dec. 13, 2019.

The studio made the announcement Monday. Patty Jenkins is returning to direct. It’s the first title to land on Nov. 1, 2019. The new date also places “Wonder Woman 2” seven weeks away — rather than a single week — from Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: Episode IX,” which opens on Dec. 20, 2019. The new Nov. 1, 2019, date is a week before the opening of the 25th James Bond movie.

“Wonder Woman” was a massive hit for Warners with $412 million in domestic grosses and $409 million internationally.

“Wonder Woman” is the fourth installment in the studio’s DC Extended Universe, which launched with 2013’s “Man of Steel” with an opening weekend of $116.6 million, followed by last year’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” with $166 million, and “Suicide Squad” with $133.6 million. “Wonder Woman,” made for about $150 million, is critically acclaimed, with a 92% “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

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“Wonder Woman” opened with $103 million in North America on June 2-4, but has outperformed the other titles to become the 20th highest domestic grosser of all time. It’s the second-highest-grossing 2017 title after “Beauty and the Beast.”

The New York Post reported on Nov. 11 that Gadot was refusing to do the sequel unless Brett Ratner’s production company was not involved but Warner Bros. has said the story is “false.” RatPac had been a financier on “Wonder Woman” but Warner Bros. severed ties with Ratner on Nov. 1 following revelations of multiple cases of sexual harassment by the filmmaker.

In 2013, Warner Bros. signed a $450-million passive co-financing deal with RatPac Entertainment, of which Ratner is CEO. That deal expires in March 2018, making the involvement of RatPac a moot point. There are five more films that RatPac helped finance but “Wonder Woman 2” is not one of those films.


‘Wonder Woman 2’ Moved Up to November 2019


We’ve been hearing about an upcoming reboot of The Crow for nearly a decade. The last we heard: Aquaman and Game of Thrones star Jason Momoa had signed on to play the titular role, and production was slated for January 2017.

At last, it’s actually happening.

Momoa just made a cryptic confirmation that production on The Crow Reborn would begin soon on Instagram. 

“I’ve been waiting for sooooo long. @corinhardy let’s do this brother aloha,” he captioned an image of some badass fan art.


Corin Hardy is a British film director who made his debut with the acclaimed 2015 horror film The Hallow. That’s a solid track record for a director about to tackle The Crow, a dark fantasy film about a man who is brought back to life after he and his fiancée are murdered and sets out on a quest for revenge.

The 1994 original film, based on a comic, became an instant classic and immortalized star Brandon Lee, who was killed on the shoot in an incident involving a prop gun. The movie was completed through the use of CGI and body doubles.


Sony Developing Spider-Man Spinoff About Morbius the Living Vampire

Marvel’s Morbius the Living Vampire is getting his own movie, which is being developed by Sony as part of its Spider-Man spinoff universe.

THR reports that Power Rangers movie writers Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama are handling the script, which has already been submitted to Sony after a secret development process. Sharpless and Sazama also have some supernatural action films under their collective belts; although, since those films are Dracula UntoldThe Last Witch Hunter and Gods of Egypt, Marvel fans may not be too thrilled with having them on board.

We here at recently wrote about 5 Marvel Horror Movies worth making (following the example of Fox’s New Mutants), and here’s what we had to say:

“Morbius is, in a lot of ways, like Doctor Strange: a brash and talented doctor searches for a cure to his affliction, and ends up stumbling into a entire new reality he never knew existed. The main difference is that the Doctor Strange movie transported Marvel movie fans into the metaphysical worlds of “magic” and multiverse theory; Morbius would take a normal man on a journey into a frightening world of the occult, while also providing a great “man vs. his savage nature” thematic arc that has been sorely missing from the modern vampire genre. The crossover potential with characters like Blade, Ghost Rider, or the Darkhold Redeemers also makes this a good pick.”

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If you’re not familiar with the character: Morbius “The Living Vampire” is actually biochemist Michael Morbius, who tried to cure himself of a rare blood disease, but instead infected himself with a form of quasi-vampirism, which include both the power (strength, speed, flight) and weaknesses (bloodlust, aversion to light) of a vampire. He was originally a villain who battled characters like Spider-Man and the X-Men, always searching for a cure to his disease, but he eventually became an anti-hero who fed on the blood of the guilty.

Sony’s Spider-Man spinoff universe is steadily shaping up to be a much darker and edgier brand, which will kick-off with Tom Hardy’s Venom movie, and continue with the crime-heist action flick, Silver & Black, featuring Silver Sable and Black Cat.


No word yet on a release date for Morbius, or any casting or director candidates. We’ll keep you updated.


‘The Walking Dead’ Recap: The King and I

After two straight weeks of miserable tedium, The Walking Deadrebounds (a bit) with an episode – “Some Guy” – that gets back to one of the series’ core strengths: reducing a sprawling post-apocalyptic epic to a few pivotal moments in the lives of ordinary people. Granted, this hour is also soul-crushingly nihilistic, piling personal pain and loss onto the show’s last remaining upbeat character. But hey … at least it’s exciting while it lasts.

Longtime Walking Dead editor Dan Liu makes his directorial debut here, working from a script credited to David Leslie Johnson, and the first-timer leaves his stamp in the opening minutes, which contain one hell of a jump-cut. He begins with a flashback to King Ezekiel suiting up alone in his room on the morning of the allies’ current multi-pronged attack, followed by a look back at the monarch’s rousing message to his troops about the difficulties they’re going to face. It’s all punctuated by his reassuring catch-phrase: “And yet I smile!” Then, when the crowd’s frenzy is at a peak, an overhead shot of pumped-up Kingdom forces slams right into a similar image of their corpses, freshly mowed-down by the enemy’s machine guns.

The rest of the chapter covers the frantic minutes and hours immediately after that ambush, seen at the end of last week’s episode, “Monsters.” The king scrambles to avoid being eaten by his own zombified subjects, and briefly gets captured by an unnamed Savior before our regent’s hulking bodyguard Jerry cleaves the creep in two with a battle-axe. Meanwhile, Carol does her best ninja impression, sneaking into the enemy compound to complete the original mission of seizing those devastatingly destructive guns before they’re transferred to the Sanctuary.

All of this works fairly well on a “blazing combat” level. Ezekiel’s desperate escape from certain death is suitably white-knuckle. Carol looks cool sneaking around corners and dodging bullets, outsmarting the Saviors. There’s even a thrilling and unexpected last-minute chase sequence, as Rick and Daryl rush in like the calvary, tailing the bad guys (and their weapons) down the twists and turns of the nearby highway. Rick zooms around walkers in his jeep, then pulls an Indiana Jones, leaping from his vehicle into the truck containing the crucial armaments. Everybody watching at home cheers.


True, nitpickers could raise a few beefs with the thrilling business above. Would Rick and Daryl really be able to avoid getting hit by the hail of gunfire aimed directly at them during their high-speed pursuit? Probably not. Doesn’t it seem like Carol keeps getting uncommonlylucky as she scrambles into ceiling crawl-spaces and ducks behind conveniently placed vehicles and boxes? Yes. Yes, it does. And why oh why, with hordes of the undead shambling behind them, does Ezekiel’s captor stop to give him a little mocking lecture? Best not to think about that too hard.

These are all forgivable lapses, however, and all attributable to the usual dramatic license of a pulpy action-adventure. The bigger problem with “Some Guy” is implied by its title. This is an episode all about King Ezekiel – who he was, who he became, who he tries to be. And apparently, it’s his turn to become the cool, likable Walking Deadcharacter who receives an overdue comeuppance. Given that there aren’t that many heroes left on this show who aren’t terminally mopey and wracked with self-doubt, the prospect of facing countless weeks ahead with a humbled king is more than a little depressing.

Making matters worse, there’s a moment late in this story where it seems like the writers are going to let Ezekiel off the hook. He’s in abject despair, because so many people followed him to their doom, and then Carol and Jerry try to encourage him to keep going. After all, his pretending to be a king saved a lot of lives, and gave so many a renewed sense of purpose. He can still reign.

But just then, the big cat Shiva shows up, and gets devoured by zombies. So not only has Ezekiel lost his swagger, the show’s just lost its resident tiger.

As readers of the original comics will undoubtedly note, this turn of events comes straight from The Walking Dead‘s creator Robert Kirkman. But the TV version of this saga hasn’t always treated the printed page as sacrosanct. In the books, Ezekiel has an affair with Michonne, for example. And Carol and Morgan are long-dead by this point (the latter after also having had an affair with Michonne). The bigger question then is: What has the show given up with this latest development? And what does it gain in return?

The answer to the former is simple: Before this week, viewers could tune in and hope that amid all the despair, we still might get to hang out for a few minutes with an awesome, benevolent leader and his badass pet. That’s gone now. Are we going to get anything out of Ezekiel’s upcoming long wallow that we haven’t already gotten from, oh, Rick, Carl, Michonne, Carol, Daryl, Morgan … and every other Walking Dead character who’s been smacked hard in the face and then cowered in a corner for half a season or more?

Don’t misunderstand. This episode is taut, well-staged, nail-biting, and heart-breaking – all things that a TV-watcher could and should want. But it also ends in a place that may leave even die-hard fans wondering if this show has anything remaining to look forward to. And there’s still such a long, long way to go.


Forever My Girl Official Trailer #2 (2018) Alex Roe, Jessica Rothe

New Stars Wars and Marvel TV shows planned for Disney’s streaming service

During today’s quarterly financial call for the Walt Disney Company, CEO Bob Iger announced that The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson will be helming his own Star Warstrilogy. But that isn’t all: Disney also plans to create a live-action Star Wars television show for its upcoming online streaming service.

There are no details on what this show might be about. But according to Variety, Iger also revealed that Disney is currently working on shows based on Monsters Inc., High School Musical, as well as a new series from Marvel. The streaming service is expected to launch in 2019.

Historically, Lucasfilm has used television as a way to expand the Star Wars universe with animated shows. The Clone Wars, which was set between Episode II: Attack of the Clonesand Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, ran from 2008 through 2015, while the currently-running Star Wars Rebels first debuted in 2014 on Disney XD. There have also been consistent rumors that a third animated show was also in the works.

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As streaming services like Netflix have taken off, various entertainment conglomerates have branched off to form their own independent online channels. Disney announced in August that it was cutting ties with Netflix to create its own service. While Disney has its own massive catalog of content to use for such a site, numerous streaming services have begun to create their own original content to help entice new subscribers to their platforms. CBS launched Star Trek: Discovery on its All Access platform this fall, while MGM is filming its own Stargate prequel show, Origins, for its Stargate Command platform. Disney creating its own ongoing content makes sense considering that it will be fighting for attention in an already-crowded field of streaming sources. New Star Wars content will almost certainly get that attention.

If Disney can pull off this project, it’ll accomplish something that has long eluded the franchise: a live-action show. Lucasfilm has developed various concepts for a standalone show in the Star Wars universe for years. In 2005, George Lucas announced a show at the Celebration III convention, saying it would be set in the underworld of the city planet Coruscant. Various writers and artists were brought on to flesh out the idea, but it was ultimately abandoned in 2010 due to concerns about the show’s budget.


We may not see Kevin Spacey in a new movie ever again

Kevin Spacey will no longer star in Ridley Scott’s All The Money in the World, despite the film being completed and scheduled for release in the US on Dec. 22. And it’s looking increasingly unlikely that we’ll see him in a new film ever again.

The actor will be replaced by Christopher Plummer as John Paul Getty in the Sony project, which tells the story of the kidnapping of the oil billionaire’s teenage grandson in 1973. The decision follows numerous accusations of sexual harassment and assault against Spacey over the last two weeks.

According to Variety, Scott and production company Imperative Entertainment made the decision to fire Spacey from the project, and were supported by Sony.


It’s an unprecedented move given that the film’s release is only six weeks away, and Spacey has already featured in the trailer for the film. Re-shoots will now take place with co-stars Michelle Williams and Mark Wahlberg, and the film’s premiere at AFI Fest will no longer go ahead.

Scott and Sony aren’t the first to cut ties with Spacey since Anthony Rapp accused him of making sexual advances towards him when he was just 14. Since then, a number of others have made similar claims, including former TV news anchor Heather Unruh, who accused him of groping her teenage son last year. Netflix fired Spacey from the final season of House of Cards, which will now be rewritten, having already entered production.

These unprecedented moves by Netflix and Sony are symbolic of how different this scandal is in comparison to others that have plagued the film industry in the past.

Hollywood loves a comeback story, as we well know.

Many actors and directors have been welcomed back into the fold after personal scandals. For example, Mel Gibson acted in at least eight movies since 2011, and was even nominated for an Oscar earlier this year for directing Hacksaw Ridge, despite spates of anti-semitic remarks, as well as recordings that heard him admitting to hitting and then threatening to kill his ex-girlfriend seven years ago. Robert Downey Jr. is now one of the highest-paid and most celebrated actors in the world but between 1996 and 2001, he spent most of his time in jail for charges related to possession of heroin and cocaine.

But this time it’s different. The sense that Hollywood has been permanently changed by this scandal, which began with the accusations of rape, sexual assault and harassment against Harvey Weinstein, is growing. Weinstein has been sacked from his own company that bears his name and the board can’t sell it. Right now, a comeback for a Hollywood kingmaker like Weinstein seems almost impossible, and the idea of seeing Spacey in any more new films feels increasingly unlikely.

Spacey has two more films that are in post-production, Gore and Billionaire Boys Club. But if the film makers follow Ridley Scott and Sony’s lead, it looks like the last film or show we may see Spacey in is House of Cards, where he had a dishonorable discharge.


We may not see Kevin Spacey in a new movie ever again

Hollow in the Land – Official Trailer (2017) Dianna Agron, Shawn Ashmore

Drake’s Hotline to Hollywood: Inside an Ambitious Push Into Film and TV

Stepping into Drake’s apartment on the 52nd floor of a Toronto high-rise, with sweeping, unobstructed views of the CN Tower and Lake Ontario in the distance, all is quiet, save for a large-screen TV playing nonstop coverage of Hurricane Irma on CNN. Though he no longer has a house in Miami, Drake is transfixed by the news. That’s just the way he approaches any subject that interests him. He dives deep, albeit on his own schedule. “This interview is kind of early for me,” he admits, though it’s presently 1:45 p.m. The night before, he started plowing through musical ideas — an instrumentation, a beat, an arrangement — well after midnight, and he didn’t stop until 10 a.m. “My wheels just start spinning faster than most people’s at that hour,” says the 31-year-old rapper-musician and former teen actor, dressed in a navy blue tracksuit and plain white Nikes. “It’s best for me to find an atmosphere that’s quiet. I don’t like a lot of people around when there’s a task at hand.”

Case in point, I find no entourage here, only longtime manager and business partner Adel “Future” Nur, 32 (not to be confused with Future, the Atlanta-born rapper). The duo is in their hometown of Toronto on this brisk September afternoon to debut their first movie as producers, The Carter Effect, a documentary about high-flying former NBA star Vince Carter, which is premiering at the Toronto Film Festival. The previous night, LeBron James swung into town to host a celebratory dinner at Drake’s pan-Asian restaurant Fring’s for a group of 30, including executives from HBO Sports and Universal Pictures and such stars as Idris Elba (who rolled in from his Molly’s Game premiere with an entourage of about 12). After heaping congratulations on his friend, James joked in a toast that they both now have “day jobs” — a reference to their budding Hollywood careers.

Drake is eager to talk about his ambitious push into film and TV, which includes teaming with Netflix to revive the critically acclaimed but short-lived British crime series Top Boy(think an across-the-pond version of The Wire). Drake and Future along with James’ SpringHill Entertainment will executive produce the series, which will go into production early next year for a 2019 debut. The pair also is shopping the Sean Menard-helmed Carter Effect, which also may land at Netflix. But the biggest indicator of Drake’s big Hollywood push is whom he is partnering with next: Steve Golin, who runs Anonymous Content (one of Hollywood’s hottest production houses and home of Spotlight and Mr. Robot), for an untitled TV series; film studio A24; and, perhaps most significantly, Apple, which has given him the go-ahead to produce whatever he chooses — at least, according to Jimmy Iovine — just as the cash-flush titan is poised to shake up the content space.

If some of the details seem vague, chalk it up to the fact that everything Drake touches becomes a news story or internet meme, with lengthy trademark battles ensuing. He once popularized the term “YOLO,” the acronym for “you only live once,” on “The Motto,” a bonus track from his 2011 album, Take Care. The term wound up on unauthorized clothing and merchandise and became a legal headache. That’s why he and Future won’t even divulge the name of their new company yet. Ditto for the specifics on their film and TV projects. Everything needs to be locked down first, including the rights to a magazine story that will serve as the basis of the Golin collaboration.

“When I get back into acting, I want to do things that make people go, ‘Wow, I didn’t expect that,’” says Drake.
Ruven Afanador
“When I get back into acting, I want to do things that make people go, ‘Wow, I didn’t expect that,’” says Drake.

Yet, despite all the monetary success, three Grammys and artistic cred, Drake possesses a self-deprecating streak, which throws me. The 15-foot white walls of his apartment are mostly bare, save for a neon art piece that says: “Less Drake, More Tupac,” from L.A. artist Patrick Martinez. “I love it,” he says of the piece that set him back a mere $6,000 but allows him to take a certain ownership of the haters, and there are many who think he’s not hard enough. “I mean, people are entitled to their opinion, but this opinion, I’d just rather it be here than anywhere else.”

If it were up to Hollywood, that art piece would simply read: “More Drake.” At a time when the film business is arguably broken, an increasingly bifurcated system of globally consumed tentpoles lacking any cultural specificity and small movies that fall into the ether, Hollywood certainly can learn something from the Drake model. “They’re really geniuses with the marketing of their music,” says Golin. “Their social media, the way they do all that, that’s very interesting to us. I’m kind of enamored of the way that they communicate and interact with their fans and their audience.” He also just finds them pleasant to be around. “There’s a lot of vain musicians at that age who are successful that I can’t deal with, but those guys are very accessible. Drake doesn’t mind when it comes to meetings and being involved; he wants to be proactive.”



Creed 2 Is Casting Ivan Drago’s Son

It looks like Ivan Drago will have a son in the forthcoming sequel Creed 2. The Rocky series has proven to be one of the most remarkably enduring in Hollywood. The original movie told the story of a small-time boxer given a chance to fight the world champion, and proving to himself he could go the distance. Star Sylvester Stallone was heavily involved with the creative path of the series, having written and directed most of the sequels. It seemed like the character’s journey had come to a natural conclusion with 2006’s Rocky Balboa until a spinoff movie focused on the son of his former rival Apollo Creed was announced.

Creed starred Michael B. Jordan in the title role, as a fighter trying to step out of the shadow of his late father and prove himself worthy, while Rocky helps train him. The movie was a big success, receiving great reviews and even pulling in a Best Supporting Actor nomination for Stallone at the Oscars. It didn’t take long for talk of a sequel to arrive, and it was only recently confirmed Stallone will once again step into the director’s chair.

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Story details for Creed 2 have yet to be confirmed, but its known that Dolph Lundgren will return as Ivan Drago – who killed Apollo Creed in the ring during Rocky IV. Now MMA fighter Sage Northcutt has revealed in a new interview with The MMA Hour (via UPROXX) that he’s auditioned to play Drago’s son in the movie. It’s not hard to see why producers would be attracted to Northcutt for the role since he’s a dead ringer for young Ivan Drago. Northcutt had this to say about the film.

“The new Creed 2 movie is coming out so I was actually going to audition for that. Got a little audition tape so hopefully that goes through. That would be pretty neat. Being Ivan Drago’s son in the movie? That would be pretty fun.”

Fans of the series were excited about Lundgren’s return as one of the franchise’s most iconic villains, with some believing young Creed would be fighting Ivan Drago himself in some kind of grudge match. If Drago’s son is in the movie, the more likely scenario will be Creed fighting his son instead, which should add a very personal element on both sides.

Creed did a lot to soothe doubts fans might have had about the Rocky series switching focus to a new lead character, and with Stallone in the director’s chair there’s every reason to believe Creed 2 will be a worthy follow-up to the previous film.



The X-Men And Fantastic Four Could Join The MCU As Disney Looks To Buy Fox

As far as big screen crossovers go, there are two that will probably never happen. The first is between Marvel and DC, for obvious reasons, and the other is one between the X-Men and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Despite the fact that the mutants did originate at the House of Ideas, Marvel Studios owns all the characters within the MCU, while Fox holds the cinematic rights to Wolvie and the gang. As such, a crossover just isn’t possible, as the two studios don’t seem to be very keen on working together.

However, it looks as if we may not have to wait for Fox and Marvel to hop into the same bed in order to see all these characters cross paths on the silver screen, as CNBC is reporting that Disney, who owns Marvel, is now looking to buy Fox. If they end up doing so, they’ll then own the rights to the X-Men and presumably, can easily include them in the MCU without any sort of issues rising up due to rights.

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Of course, it wouldn’t only be the aforementioned mutants who get a chance to interact with Iron Man, Hulk and the rest of the gang, as the Fantastic Four, Deadpool and many others would be included here, too, and would also be able to find a spot within the Marvel Cinematic Universe without any issue. In short, Disney would own all of Fox’s characters and could use them as they see fit.

Nothing has been finalized as of yet, but from what we understand, Fox isn’t able to compete anymore due to the rise of streaming companies like Netflix and Amazon. As such, they’re now looking to sell, and Disney might just be the one to purchase them.

Granted, the Mouse House wouldn’t take hold of everything, as CNBC says:

Disney could not own two broadcast networks and would therefore not buy the Fox broadcast network. It would not buy Fox’s sports programming assets in the belief that combining them with ESPN could be seen as anti-competitive from an antitrust standpoint and it would not buy the Fox News or Business channel. Disney would also not purchase Fox’s local broadcasting affiliates, according to people familiar with the negotiations.

Still, none of this is relevant to characters like the X-Men and Fantastic Four and should a deal place here, we might just see that one, big cohesive Marvel Cinematic Universe that we’ve always dreamed of.


Amazon wants to turn Lord of the Rings into the next Game of Thrones

Amazon Studios has been looking for a way to duplicate HBO’s success with Game of Thrones, and the company may have found a solution: adapting J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings into a TV series. Variety reports that the company is currently in talks with Warner Bros. Television and the late author’s estate, and while discussions are said to be in “very early stages,” it is clearly a high priority, with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos himself involved in the negotiations.

Amazon isn’t the only looking into the rights, according to Deadline, which reports that the Tolkien Estate is looking to sell the television rights to the iconic fantasy series to the tune of $200-250 million, and has approached Netflix and HBO as well. There appears to be some strings attached: the rights might not encompass all of the characters in the story. HBO has reportedly passed on the project.

Amazon Studios has unexpectedly found itself in the midst of a transition. Earlier this year, Bezos reportedly got involved with the creative direction of the studio, tasking the group with finding high-profile dramas like the hit HBO series that could have a broad, global appeal. Then last month, Amazon Studios executive Roy Price resigned in the wake of sexual harassment allegations, a move that led to additional resignations and a reshuffling of the studio’s executive ranks.

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If finding the next Game of Thrones is the goal, it’s hard to imagine a property more suited to the task then Tolkien’s series. The Lord of the Rings tells the story of Frodo Baggins, a young Hobbit who is tasked with destroying an artifact called the One Ring in the hopes of saving the world of Middle-earth. The books have been adapted multiple times over the years, with the most commercially — and critically — successful adaptation coming in the form of Peter Jackson’s film trilogy. (Jackson’s films adapting The Hobbit were markedly less successful.)

While the adaptation is far from certain — the deal hasn’t even been closed yet — this is the kind of project that could bring Amazon Studios a significant amount of attention, and draw in viewers across the world. While Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu have all made huge strides as original content creators, Amazon has yet to score with a far-reaching, cultural conversation piece the way that Netflix has with something like Stranger Things.

While The Lord of the Rings would certainly check all the Game of Thrones boxes when it comes to fantasy and adventure, it is also worth noting that the books aren’t really known for being filled with the kind of sex-and-violence antics that HBO’s show has become synonymous with. On the other hand, Rings has one huge advantage: the books are actually finished.


Jordan Peele Is Rebooting The Twilight Zone

You are about to enter another dimension. A dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land of imagination. A dimension where HOLY SHIT, JORDAN PEELE IS REBOOTING THE TWILIGHT ZONE.


According to The Hollywood Reporter, Peele’s aptly named Monkeypaw Productions will produce a new version of The Twilight Zone, with Marco Ramirez of Netflix’s The Defenders tapped as showrunner. The new Twilight Zone is bound for the subscription service CBS All-Access, so if a Good Wife spinoff or a new Star Trek weren’t enough to turn your head, this might be the tipping point.


It’s hard to imagine someone better equipped to reboot The Twilight Zone than Jordan Peele. In conjunction with the release of Get Out earlier this year, Peele programmed a series of classic “social thrillers” like Night of the Living Dead and Rosemary’s Baby, and he’s clearly passionate about using genre stories to explore a wide range of social and political issues. Now, he’ll be able to program new, twisty stories with pointed social messages every week. Sign us the hell up.


Beyonce to Star in Disney’s Live-Action ‘Lion King’

Disney his officially introducing the full cast for its upcoming Lion King.

Beyonce, who was previously reported to be eyed for the film, has been confirmed as Nala, Simba’s (Donald Glover) childhood friend and later love interest. Jon Favreau is directing the film as his follow-up to his successful Jungle Book remake.

“It is a director’s dream to assemble a talented team like this to bring this classic story to life,” Favreau said Wednesday in a statement.

Here’s the full list, with some new names as well as others that have been reported over the last few months:

James Earl Jones reprises his role from the 1994 original as Simba’s father Mufasa, while Chiwetel Ejiofor is stepping into the villain role as Simba’s uncle Scar. Alfre Woodard is voicing Simba’s mother Sarabi, with child actor JD McCrary playing the young version of Simba (stepping into the shoes of Jonathan Taylor Thomas from the original film). Shahadi Wright Joseph is voicing the young Nala. Other actors playing the good guys include John Kani as the baboon Rafiki and John Oliver voicing Mufasa’s confidant, the hornbill Zazu.


Simba will along the way meet two new pals, warthog Pumbaa (Seth Rogen) and meerkat Timon (Billy Eichner). The three menacing hyenas will be voiced by Black Panther actress Florence Kasumba, Eric Andre and Keegan-Michael Key.

Favreau showed off the jaw-dropping first footage for the film over the summer at D23. The footage included photo-real African landscapes and animals, ending with the iconic moment in which Rafiki introduces an adorable young Simba on Pride Rock as “Circle of Life” plays.

The original Lion King grossed more than $968 million worldwide and featured memorable songs from Elton John and Tim Rice.

The new Lion King is set to open July 19, 2019.


Tyrese Gibson vows to quit ‘Fast and Furious’ franchise over feud with the Rock

Tyrese Gibson might have just played the wrong hand here. The ‘Fast & Furious’ star has ramped up his feud with Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, saying that if Johnson returns to the high-octane movie series for the ninth movie, he will quit.

“Hello world………. hello loyal fans and loved ones from OUR fast universe…….. I’m sorry to announce that if Dewayne is in Fast9 there will no more Roman Peirce,” he wrote in a post on his Instagram page, perhaps purposely misspelling Johnson’s name, but also managing to bungle the name of his own character too, Roman Pearce.

“You mess with family and my daughters survival I mess with yours.”

He also appeared to allege that Johnson uses performance-enhancing drugs to maintain his physique in the rambling message.

“Close your eyes dude you’re a ‘Clown’…… #CandyAssBitchMade All my real one…. Men on integrity… my real ones out here stand UP…… folks that GP to the gym and get big naturally #NoJuice #NoOJ spin off huh? Spin off these nuts selfish champ…… pause notice who’s got his arms around my shoulder and who’s standing alone – #OurChildrenMatter.”


The feud is a long-standing one, but intensified following recent news that Johnson had signed up for a spin-off movie for his character, special agent Luke Hobbs, alongside Jason Statham.

The move appears to have delayed the next ‘Fast & Furious’ movie for a year, which it’s thought is the reason why Gibson has gone on the offensive.

In previous posts, he’s said that he begged Johnson, who has called out his male F&F co-stars in the past, not to take on the spin-off, but his pleas were ignored.

Johnson has so far not responded to the latest outburst.

But Gibson appears to be beset by personal issues at present, notably an ugly and public custody battle for his daughter Shayla with his ex-wife Norma Gibson.

She alleges that Gibson assaulted the 10-year-old, holding her down and beating her so badly that she could not sit, and is seeking a restraining order against him.

Gibson, who remarried earlier this year, says that he only hit her once on the behind.

He was spotted last weekend spending time with his daughter, but in the company of a court-appointed monitor.


Why The DC Movies Have Struggled, According To Henry Cavill

The DC films created by Warner Bros. (formerly known as the DCEU) have proven divisive since the release of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. While the films have made money at the box office, critically, they have had mixed results. This contradiction has spawned inevitable comparisons to Marvel’s financially and critically successful films. This fact is not lost on the stars of the film, including Superman himself, Henry Cavill. The actor recently explained his nuanced take on why the DC movies have struggled, noting,

Even if Marvel didn’t exist, we’d struggle. There was a style they [DC] were going for, an attempt to be different and look at things from a slightly different perspective, which hasn’t necessarily worked. Yes, it has made money but it has not been a critical success; it hasn’t given everyone that sensation which superheroes should give the viewer.


Henry Cavill’s take here is pretty intriguing. He seems to be judging the DC films on their own merits and not based on how they compare to Marvel’s films. He believes that the tonal and stylistic differences compared to other superhero films may have been admirable in their attempt, but he feels they didn’t necessarily work for the subject matter or what the audience expects. This is an honest and sober analysis that doesn’t defer to the standard refrain of ‘we didn’t make this for the critics’ that so often accompanies blockbusters that fail critically. Despite the struggle thus far, Henry Cavill seems optimistic and positive about the future of the DC films. He also told The Rake (via @sliickslack):

I feel like now the right mistakes have been made and they haven’t been pandered [to], and we can start telling the stories in the way they need to be told. It is even better to come back from a mistake or stylistic error into the correct vein because it will make it seem that much stronger. Wonder Woman was the first step in the right direction.

Wonder Woman could not have come at a better time for Warner Bros. and the DC film universe. The film was a massive critical and commercial success that Henry Cavill sees as the first course correction down a better path for the DC films. In sports, it is often said that you learn more from a loss than you do from a win and that silver lining outlook will hopefully serve the DC films well going forward. The hope would be that fans would give DC’s superhero movies the benefit of the doubt and judge each movie on its own merits. And they will get that chance soon as Henry Cavill will presumably be seen in the upcoming Justice League.


A PRAYER BEFORE DAWN Official Trailer (2017) Joe Cole, Action

John Carpenter Confirms New Halloween

There may be no more storied and distinguished American horror director than John Carpenter. His closest competition would be George Romero and Tobe Hooperbut Carpenter’s is easily the most visually accomplished of the three. Carpenter is responsible for at least six classics that transcend the horror and science-fiction genres’ supposed low-brow pleasures, including The ThingEscape from New YorkThey LiveStarmanChristine, and most notably, Halloween.

Over the last decade, Rob Zombie has made one admirable remake and a frankly visionary sequel to that remake, but Carpenter has largely left the franchise alone until very recently, when David Gordon Greenand Danny McBridebrought him a new story that he connected to immediately. The filmmaker is serving as creative consultant and executive producer for the latest Halloweenmovie, which Green will also direct, and his original muse, Jamie Lee Curtis, is returning to play Laurie Strode, the iconic “final girl” from the original. The movie arrives on October 19th, 2018 and it has quickly skyrocketed to the top of my most anticipated movies of 2018 list. Yes, I actually have a list.

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One looming question about this remake is where exactly the story will exist compared to the other Halloween movies and during an interview on CBS Sunday Morning, which you can watch below, Carpenter slipped in a tidbit of information about that very thing. After speaking about how the original movie came together and his upcoming tour behind the recently released anthology of his classic scores for his films, Carpenter confirmed that the new movie will ignore all the sequels, including (presumably) Zombie’s movies. Not much else is known about the direction Carpenter, Green, and McBride are taking this but they have all proven themselves to be imaginative filmmakers before. Whatever they dream up between now and next October may not be as stunning as Carpenter’s original vision but considering its pedigree, it’s unlikely it will be anything less than fascinating.

Here’s the boilerplate synopsis from Universal:

Jamie Lee Curtis returns to her iconic role as Laurie Strode, who comes to her final confrontation with Michael Myers, the masked figure who has haunted her since she narrowly escaped his killing spree on Halloween night four decades ago.


Master of horror John Carpenter will executive produce and serve as creative consultant on this film, joining forces with cinema’s current leading producer of horror, Jason Blum (Get Out, Split, The Purge, Paranormal Activity).  Inspired by Carpenter’s classic, filmmakers David Gordon Green and Danny McBride crafted a story that carves a new path from the events in the landmark 1978 film, and Green also directs.


Rumor: Green Lantern In Justice League Confirmed?

Green Lantern’s role in Justice League may have just been confirmed after footage from the film was shown during a fan event in China. The marketing campaign for Zack Snyder’s epic team-up has focused almost exclusively on the main five of Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, the Flash, and Cyborg, but there will surely be some surprises in store when the film makes its way into theaters in a few weeks. In addition to Superman’s resurrection following his “death” in last year’s Batman V Superman, viewers are expecting a Green Lantern cameo in some capacity. The Corps. very much exists in the DC Extended Universe, and Justice League would be a great opportunity to bring them to the fold.

Rumors have long persisted multiple Lanterns will pop up in the ensemble piece, helping set the stage for the Green Lantern Corps. film that’s said to be in development. Recently, a promotional contest seemingly revealed Hal Jordan (or John Stewart, or one of the other Lanterns) is part of the group, but now we may have even more concrete evidence a Green Lantern is part of the League.

Twitter user FIONA IS ALL IN! was one of the many who attended a special event that was put together for the Chinese leg of the Justice Leaguepromotional tour. It involved a screening of 30 minutes from the finished movie, and apparently there was a surprise in what was included:

When asked for further clarification from one of her followers, FIONA IS ALL IN! replied with “Green Lantern confirmed.” Considering this is true, there are some things to keep in mind. It’s entirely possible that any Lantern appearance in Justice League takes place in the opening prologue, which depicts a Lord of the Rings-esque battle for Earth between Parademons, Atlanteans, and Amazons. In the Justice League trailer, Steppenwolf mentions how there are “no Lanterns” anymore, so he’s likely crossed paths with them before. Perhaps one of the earliest members of the Corps. fought in this tremendous conflict, which would be a treat for DC fans to see onscreen. Considering how the studio has avoided even hinting at a modern Lantern joining Bruce Wayne, Diana Prince, and the rest in advertising, it would be odd for Warner Bros. to spoil that reveal with only a couple weeks to go. Giving fans a taste of the opening sequence (and not the climactic battle) seems likely.

Fans of the Green Lantern may be upset their favorite superhero is being saved for a different day, but it’s probably for the best. Justice League has plenty on its plate already, serving as the formal introductions of Flash, Aquaman, and Cyborg, while also continuing the stories of DC’s Trinity. With a lean two-hour runtime, adding a seventh hero to the mix would run the risk of having someone draw the short straw and be underdeveloped. It may seem sacrilege for the first Justice League movie to not include one of its most recognizable members, but it looks like that’s what is about to happen. When Green Lantern finally does suit up, it’ll hopefully be worth the wait.


‘Fast and Furious 9’ returns to roots, brings back Justin Lin, Jordana Brewster

Amid ongoing drama in the Fast & Furious universe, the franchise’s star has teased the return of two important Fast figures — Jordana Brewsters and Justin Lin — the latter of which is in “advanced talks” to get back in the director’s chair, a source close to the production confirmed to EW.

During a Facebook Live on Wednesday, Diesel revealed he’s working on something “top secret” involving the director and actress. Describing Lin, who directed the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth installments, as a “forefather” and “architect” of the series, he hinted that the filmmaker will be returning for what could be the final two films.

“‘The crowd goes wild,’” Diesel said upon revealing Lin’s presence. “‘It’s a three-point shot that made 9 and 10 incredible.’ You wanted 9 and 10 to be incredible. We’ve heard your concerns about the saga and where it needs to arrive in its final chapters.”


Then, Diesel unveiled that his onscreen sister Jordana Brewster was also there with them. The actress, who is one of the original Fast members, was absent from April’s Fate of the Furious. Her continued appearance in the franchise is tricky considering her character, Mia, is married to the late Paul Walker’s Brian. Yet, Diesel says, “You’re about to see [Brewster] in the upcoming chapters of the Fastuniverse.”


‘Fast & Furious’: Justin Lin in ‘advanced talks’ to return as director


Is That Zeus Fighting the Bad Guy in a New ‘Justice League’ TV Spot?

When Justice League baddie Steppenwolf first arrived on Earth in ancient times, he threw down with a heavy hitter: Zeus, king of the Greek gods and Wonder Woman’s father. A new TV spot for Justice League might just show this epic showdown, mixing the past with the present and hinting at just how powerful Steppenwolf really is.


A TV spot for Justice League posted to Fandango’s Twitter account on Wednesday seems to indicate that Diana’s old man is going to make an appearance in the film.

During Steppenwolf’s previous attempt to invade Earth, he came into conflict with human, Amazonian, and Atlantean armies. The brief flashes of this fight shown in the teaser show a character shooting lightning at Darkseid’s uncle Steppenwolf. Barring the wizard Shazam or some other random DC character with magic abilities, this is probably Zeus.

Zeus was introduced into the DC cinematic universe in Wonder Woman, where it was revealed that he suffered mortal wounds protecting humanity from Ares. Luckily, he fathered Diana with Hippolyta before he died.


Because Diana is half god, she’s able to kill other gods. If Zeus was crucial to staving off Steppenwolf the first time, perhaps Wonder Woman will be the one to drive him away in Justice League. Trailers have previously shown her going toe-to-toe with the Apokoliptian villain, and given her character’s prominence, it wouldn’t be beyond the realm of possibility for her to land some kind of killing blow (even if Superman’s return likely factors into this).

In the trailer, the character jumping past to the potential Zeus wields what looks like three-pronged weapon in his hand, which might indicate he’s Poseidon or a former King of Atlantis (both of whom supposedly fought Steppenwolf in the past).


Ultimately, when this particular scene takes place will determine who’s present. If it’s after Ares killed the rest of the Greek gods, then that trident-using character is probably the Atlantean king (or some random warrior with a trident), and the lightning-shooting fella isn’t Zeus, which could be a way of building up to the 2019 Shazam film. If it happens before, then they’re probably Greek gods.

With Justice League almost in theaters, though, fans won’t have to speculate for too much longer about who shows up when in the film.


Shazam Director Anticipates Inevitable Fan Backlash

The director of DC’s upcoming Shazam! movie says he’s enjoying the time before the fan backlash inevitably begins. Warner Bros currently has a number of irons in the fire when it comes to films based on DC Comics. The next few years will see a flurry of heroes hit the big screen, and it’s clear that more will arrive soon given how many characters have a movie in production. And while WB and DC aren’t taking the same approach as Marvel, they share in common a desire for idiosyncratic directing choices.

Just as Marvel chose James Gunn for Guardians of the Galaxy and Taika Waititi for Thor: Ragnarok, WB and DC have made some interesting hires as they seek to expand their slate of superhero films. Two of the more intriguing are horror directors James Wan and David F. Sandberg. Wan will be helming Aquaman next year, while Sandberg will help bring Shazam!to theaters in 2019. But while Wan has experience with a big budget film thanks to Furious 7, Sandberg will be entering some dangerous new waters as he adapts Billy Batson and his superhero alter-ego for the big screen.

David F. Sandberg posted to Twitter earlier about how he’s bracing himself to the reactions from fans when more is revealed about Shazam! And given that the director has never been in a position like this before, he says he’s appreciating the lack of scrutiny he’s under for the time being.

Sandberg goes on to give an example of fans being mad about whether or not Shazam has a hood on his cape. Though a relatively new addition to the costume, it already has its advocates and detractors. And as anyone who’s every worked on an adaptation of a popular character can tell you, it’s virtually impossible to please every fan who feels ownership for a work of fiction.


Nothing will truly be able to prepare Sandberg for the vitriol that over-zealous fans often lay into creatives, but at least he’s realistic about what he’ll face. For now, however, he can rest easy. With Shazam! not shooting until early next year, little is known about the movie. We’ve heard rumors the Marvel Family will appear and seen hints of other popular Shazam!characters, but nothing concrete is known. Even the lead role has yet to be cast.

Recently, audition tapes for Shazam and actors testing for Billy Batson arrived online, providing some hints about the film. We know it will take place in a world with other DC heroes, but there’s no guarantee yet that it will be in the main DC film timeline. But with only a few months left before filming begins, it shouldn’t be too much longer until more details about Shazam! emerge.


‘Logan’ Team on Dreaming Up a ‘Laura’ Spinoff and Finding the Drama in Wolverine

Hugh Jackman has said goodbye to Wolverine, but the story isn’t quite over.

Seven months after the film hit theaters, Jackman and director James Mangold are still processing the level of praise lavished on the film, which exceeded their expectations from when they set out to tell story to end all Wolverine stories. Loganwas made for less money than the previous two Wolverine films, but Jackman’s R-rated swan song became the most financially successful of the three by far with $616 million worldwide (Mangold’s The Wolverine made just over $414 in 2013), and it remains one of the best reviewed movies of 2017.

The film is continuing to defy expectations. While Logan is the rare superhero project that doesn’t exist to help set up a shared universe or sequels, a spinoff is brewing (“We’re just working on a script,” Mangold says of a film that would center on Dafne Keen’s Laura). And it has emerged as a possible awards contender.

“I think I have a kind of healthy contempt for this kind of film. Even the genre,” Mangold tells The Hollywood Reporter when asked why the film appealed to comic book fans and general audiences alike. “I tried to bring with it a kind of jaundiced eye about formula that we’ve gotten really in the habit of delivering on, and was trying to deliver a picture that offers some of the same sense of wonder and imagination that these films tend to offer but doing so in a way where it’s less about fetishizing costumes and equipment and CG effects and more about character.”

Jackman tells THR that after a worldwide tour promoting the film, he is at peace with hanging up the claws after 17 years and nine movies, feeling he delivered his definitive performance this time out. 

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“I think there was a moment in the first X-Men…probably five or six weeks in…when I felt I was really making Wolverine my own. It took me a little while to get there,” says Jackman of his experience with the franchise as  whole. “I think it wasn’t until this last one, in terms of watching the movie, where I felt kind of separate from the character, where I could think, ‘Man I love that character.’ I was probably not fully at peace with the work I had done with him until this last one.”

Every few years following Heath Ledger’s Oscar win for 2008’s The Dark Knight, genre films have been popping up more frequently in the awards conversation. Recent years have seen 2015’s Mad Max: Fury Road (six Oscar wins in the crafts categories, plus nominations for best picture and best director) and 2016’s Deadpool (surprise best picture and best actor Golden Globes noms). This year, Logan and Wonder Woman are two comic book films in the conversation, and 20th Century Fox has fueled the flames by sending screeners to Academy voters and scheduling the Logan team for appearances at awards-focused screenings and Q&As.

X-Men franchise producer Hutch Parker admits awards season recognition would be a nice bonus following the outpouring from fans and critics, though he maintains he’s satisfied no matter what happens. 

“I’m realistic about the kind of movie this is, and I’m hopeful that various people in those positions will see it and recognize it — even though it is an R-rated movie, and even though it has a legacy as part of a comic book franchise,” Parker says. “I’d love for people to be able to assess the craft on the performances and the work on their own merits.”

James Mangold

One possibility for that recognition is Patrick Stewart. As soon as Logan hit screens, awards pundits began raising the question of whether Stewart could finally earn an Oscar nomination, thanks to the combination of the actor delivering one of his finest big-screen performances yet, and the notion that a performer of his pedigree is overdue.

“The fact that Patrick has not received those kinds of acknowledgements is astounding to me,” says Parker.

While Stewart has yet to earn a nomination for film work, he has received four Emmy nominations, as well as three Golden Globe nominations for television performances: in 1999 for Moby Dick, in 2005 for The Lion in Winter and in 2016 for Blunt Talk.

In Logan, Prof. X suffers from degenerative brain disease and must come to terms with losing his most valuable asset, his intellect. It showed audiences a side to Stewart that departed from the calm, cool and collected roles he’d played in Star Trek movies and previous X-Men films.

“It gave Patrick freedom that he hasn’t had, certainly in these kinds of films. Patrick attacked this thing with ferocity. He was fearless about playing Charles’ weaknesses as well as his strengths,” says Mangold. “He wasn’t worried about the vanity of it.”

The script from Mangold, Scott Frank and Michael Green also gave Stewart and Jackman a lot of meaty material together, such as the nearly seven-minute, dialogue-heavy scene early in film that takes place in a dilapidated tank.

“The level of depth and the drama in that one scene is probably more than the two of us have had to work with…than all of the other films combined,” says Jackman. “So, I think it’s just fun watching a thoroughbred like Patrick Stewart gallop, and…with the great scenes that he got to really show everything he can do.”


Venom Film Teases the Start of Production on Social Media

The social media account for the Venom film starring Tom Hardy has teased the start of production today. Although Sony scored a hit teaming with Marvel for Spider-Man: Homecoming the studio is adamant about producing its own series of films based on the wall-crawler’s supporting characters. That means films that exist outside the Marvel Cinematic Universe, making a solo adventure based on Spidey’s doppelgänger nemesis a big risk with a potentially high reward that could spawn a whole new series of films for the studio.

Sony efforts have so far netted them a high-profile lead in Tom Hardy. The actor joins Zombieland‘s Ruben Fleischer who was brought on to direct, while the supporting cast has filled out with more recognizable names as the film approached its start of production. It hasn’t always been smooth sailing for the film, as production was delayed several times and the script was reworked by the writer of 50 Shades of Grey. After a series of false starts, it seems the film is finally set to get off the ground.

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This is something of a fresh start for Sony, as the planned Spider-verse series of films were put on hold following the reception of The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and once it became clear the studio was going to put a flagship character like Spider-Man back in the hands of his parent company. That puts a great deal of pressure on Venom to perform at the box office. Those concerns are alleviated to a certain degree when you look at the talent the film has assembled that includes Rogue One‘s Riz Ahmed, as a mysterious Marvel character, while Michelle Williams has signed on to play the female lead. Meanwhile, the movie also boasts indie-darling Jenny Slate, as well as recent additions Reid Scott and Scott Haze.

Venom will have stiff competition next year with superhero films from Marvel Studios, Fox, and Warner Bros. But with the film being described as a horror/sci-fi film that is gunning for a R-rating, it may have found the right formula to stand out from the rest of the comic book crowd.



NOT QUITE TWO years ago, Netflix launched simultaneouslyin 130 new countries. It now operates nearly everywhere in the world. With that expansion has come explosive international growth—along with the challenge of how best to introduce its homegrown favorites, like Stranger Things, to an audience that spans all the way to the Upside Down and back.

It’s hard to overstate how important it is to Netflix’s long-term ambitions that shows like Stranger Things “travel.” The streaming service needs to maintain a library that users will pay for year-round, and even with an original content budget pegged at $8 billion for 2018 it has to spend wisely to ensure it’s producing content that plays as well in Canada as it does in Cameroon. Or, from another angle: Not even Netflix has the budget to invest heavily in hyperlocal content for Estonia.

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Making movies or series that play well overseas depends to a certain extent on quality, of course, and Netflix has long maintained that geography is a poor indicator of what people will actually watch. But for a show like Stranger Things—which is an Emmy-nominated and critically-praised show in the US—to succeed abroad, Netflix has to translate its genius to as many markets as possible. Literally.

Found in Translation

The world contains thousands of languages. Figuring out the proper translation for “Demogorgon” in each of them would be singularly impractical. But for the 20 languages in which Netflix does provide subtitles—and the large number in which it dubs shows—it sweats the small stuff.

That means the creation of a Key Names and Phrases tool, a sprawling spreadsheet in which teams of freelancers and vendors input translations in the name of consistency. Does the show include a fictional location? A catchphrase? A sci-fi item that has no real-world corollary? All those things go in the KNP, allowing Netflix to know how they read in Greek, Spanish, Swedish, Vietnamese, and so on.

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Some translations are fairly straightforward; a university becomes a universidad for Spanish-language audiences, for example. Others, though, require substantially more legwork. Especially for a ’80s-reference-heavy series like Stranger Things that is fairly out of step with the present.

“It’s a really deep dive into what are the elements of the story, what are the specifics of the story, that we need to make sure we are translating the same way that things were translated, say, 30 years ago,” says Denny Sheehan, the director of Netflix’s content localization and quality control efforts. “We compile all of that into essentially a show bible, and we give that to all of our translators, all of our dub studios, so they can reference that.”

Take that Demogorgon, the big bad the Stranger Things kids named after a Dungeons & Dragons demon prince. To ensure that connection transcended language barriers, Sheehan’s team dug into old D&D materials to nail down how various cultures translated “Demogorgon” in the mid-1970s. Similar efforts were made to track down decades-old marketing materials for, yes, Eggo waffles, which play an outsized role in Season 1.

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That focus on consistency goes beyond the words themselves to the voice actors saying them. Netflix says it looks for people who sound like the original cast but also, as Sheehan puts it, “embody the spirit of the character and tone.” No real surprise there. But the company also aims for voices that can work across titles. The actress who voices Winona Ryder’s Joyce Byers in Stranger Things, for instance, also provides the dubs for Lydia Deetz in Beetlejuice, and Mina Harker in Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

“We think of the subtitles and dubs as enabling access to the story,” Sheehan says. “Our goal is to use creative intent as the North Star, to really create culturally relevant and resonant translations for the continent that have a wide global appeal.”

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‘Star Wars’ Fans Think Boba Fett is Alive in ‘The Last Jedi’

The oldest debate in Star Wars history might not have anything to do with Han shooting Greedo under that table. Instead, it’s all about whether or not Boba Fett survived being eaten by the Sarlacc Pit in Return of the Jedi. For years, fans and writers of Star Wars comic books and novel have maintained that Boba Fett wasn’t eaten at all. But, will that become canon? Some fans believe there’s serious evidence to prove Fett is still at large during the time of The Last Jedi.


On Sunday, a Reddit user pointed out that a few leaked images for upcoming 2018 Star Wars toys clearly depict Boba Fett flying out of the Sarlacc Pit, apparently shooting his flame-thrower at it. While the leaked images don’t prove anything, and may not end up being “real” official Star Wars products at all, it is an interesting choice. Why show Boba Fett flying around the Tatooine desert at all, much less next to the Sarlacc Pit unless he’s making some kind of comeback post-Return of the Jedi?

Again, Boba Fett truthers have existed way before Lucasfilm even dreamed of creating a new unified canon for Star Wars. In 1991, the comic book series Dark Empire made it clear that Fett didn’t die on Tatooine at all, and was still a formidable Bounty Hunter six years after the Battle of Endor. In that timeline, Fett was hunting Han and Leia for the murder of Jabba the Hutt. Subsequent to that, the rest of the expanded universe novels and comics continued to operate under the assumption that Fett was alive. Obviously, Dark Empire and all the other ‘90s expanded universe stuff has been swept away in terms of new canon, but that doesn’t mean some version of Fett’s escape from the Sarlacc couldn’t still happen.

The latest canon story to feature Boba Fett is called “Added Muscle,” which appears in the new anthology Star Wars book; A Certain Point of View. In the audiobook version, Fett is voiced by none other than Jon Hamm, which couldindicate Disney is setting up Hamm to voice Fett in that rumored Boba Fett standalone movie.


The question is, would such hypothetical Jon Hamm-as-Boba-Fett standalone movie take place after Return of the Jedi or after? Because if Boba Fett is alive during the time of The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, he’d be about the age Han Solo was. Which means, Snoke might hire him to do some dirty work related to Luke Skywalker.

The Last Jedi opens on December 15, 2017. As of this writing, a standalone Boba Fett movie has not been confirmed by Lucasfilm.



After season 7 ended on a cliff hanger, with Maggie, Rick, and Ezekiel making a speech in which they promise a massive war against Negan and his group, AMC’s The Walking Deadreturned with its season 8 premiere last night, and some people were super stoked about it.

Others, however, definitely weren’t as excited, and thought the episode was exactly what the eighth season of a hit TV show would be: Out of ideas for original, riveting content.


The episode, titled “Mercy,” wasn’t just the season 8 premiere — it was also the series’ 100th episode, which is a big deal for a TV show. There aren’t many out there that manage to keep their audiences engaged enough to produce so many episodes. 

In fact, some fans in London were so thrilled about the milestone that they had a Walking Dead parade, where they waddled through the streets dressed as zombies to celebrate the momentous occasion. 

Anyway, back to the show. And just FYI — there might be some spoilers up in here, so if you’re a fan of the show and haven’t watched the season 8 premiere yet, you might want to close out of this page right now.

In last night’s episode, the much-anticipated war between Rick and Negan finally began, but the episode didn’t exactly follow a chronological format. It jumped around from scene to scene, and at one point, we saw Rick and his buddies prepare for their attack, but then we suddenly saw a flash from the future where Rick looks like a Santa Claus who has been dragged through the depths of hell by Satan himself.


A bunch of other things happen and there’s a lot of screaming and gun-shooting, but ultimately, we conclude at the end of the episode that Rick has won the first battle. 

Hooray. Way to go, Rick. Gold star for you.

And since Twitter is the ultimate place for people to voice their opinions on arbitrary things, here are some of the best reactions from this season’s explosive premiere, where the entire episode is basically summed up with a GIF or two. 



Jared Leto dedicated to bringing fans the third Tron 3 movie!

Inexplicably the planned sequel to director Joseph Kosinski‘s 2010 hit sequel Tron Legacy was canceled before production could begin in 2015. It was believed the sequel would continue immediately on from the closing moments of Tron Legacy in which Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund) brought ISO Quorra (Olivia Wilde) into the real world, possibly showing elements of the Grid within our world. It was reported in 2015 that for reasons unknown that Disney had decided to cancel production on a third Tron movie in favor of developing other properties, but in 2016 former Disney development executive Brigham Taylor hinted that plans for a third movie were not dead, which was later confirmed by actor Hedlund and director Kosinski. More recently THR reported that Disney is reportedly still considering a new Tron movie, which is rumored to be a reboot of the franchise with Jared Leto attached to star as a new character named Ares. Speaking recently in an interview with Collider about his latest movie Blade Runner 2049 American actor Leto spoke briefly about the untitled Tron movie…

 “It was a huge movie for me as well and I do think there’s so much potential in that world, there so much left to be said. I’m absolutely game to try to help in any way that I can bring that to life… It’s something that we’re in discussions about and very much looking forward to bringing to reality. It’s very early days though.”

While it seems Leto is still attached to and seemingly dedicated to the project, sadly it also appears that the project has yet to be even seriously considered by Disney and greenlit for production, taking into account that there has still been no true explanation as to why the aforementioned planned sequel was dropped by Disney just before it was to begin production. Considering the franchises popularity and its prolific stature in geek culture it seems perplexing that Disney is not more invested in expanding the universe. As for Kosinski, following the critical success of Only the Brave, and his forthcoming Top Gun: Maverick in 2019, should he direct the next Tron movie, it wouldn’t be until 2020 at the earliest.

Conceptually the planned premise for the third Tron movie would have been something fresh and original with virtually generated entities able to become flesh and bone, nevermind the dynamics this would have created both on a personal level for Quorra, but also on a philosophical level for characters such as Clu and Tron. Then of course if such a movie was to be made the visuals alone could have been award-worthy. It’s a shame then that the only Light Cycles we will probably get to see ripping up the tarmac of a ‘real’ street will be in Steven Spielberg‘s forthcoming Ready Payer One (pictured above), which you’ll be able to get 50% off on Movie tickets from CouponsMonk for.

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‘Defenders’ Ranks Among Netflix’s Most Binge-Watched Shows

The old way of watching television shows is being replaced by the wide world of binging. Sites like Netflix and Hulu have made it easy for audiences to consume shows in a weekend if they so please, and it seems plenty of people did just that for Marvel’s The Defenders.

Thanks to a new report, Netflix has confirmed its latest Marvel series managed to charm fans when it dropped. The site released its list of most binge-watched original series, and The Defenders came in at third place.

The superhero miniseries pulled ahead of some major competitors to steal third place. Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life managed to come in on top with Fuller House trailing behind it, but shows like The Ranch and even Orange Is The New Black failed to take over Daredevil’s new posse.

You can check out the study’s full list of binge-friendly shows below:

  • Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life
    Fuller House
    Marvel’s The Defenders
    The Seven Deadly Sins
    The Ranch
    Santa Clarita Diet
    Trailer Park Boys
    F is for Family
    Orange Is the New Black
    Stranger Things
    Friends from College
    Grace and Frankie
    Wet Hot American Summer
    Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
    House of Cards
    Chewing Gum
    Master of None

According to Netflix, The Defenders really shined in one market; The site says Korea took a liking to the series the country had the most binge-watchers eyeing The Defenders than any other country. When it comes to the U.S., it seems Netflix subscribers are sending that kind of love to House of Cards.


Jon Snow went to costume party dressed as Jon Snow

Kit Harington has revealed how he recently went to a costume party dressed as his “Game of Thrones” character Jon Snow.

The actor claimed that fiancee Rose Leslie forced him to commit the faux pas.

Speaking to Heat Magazine, Harington explained: “Recently I went to a 30th birthday party and the theme was ‘bad taste.’ I was in Aberdeen, and I left it really late to get a costume.”

“So I went to the one costume shop that was open … and the woman who worked there said, ‘You know, you really look like the guy from ‘Game of Thrones,’ and I’ve got a ‘Game of Thrones’ outfit.”

“And she pulled out a Jon Snow costume, and Rose just whispered in my ear, ‘I won’t love you if you don’t wear it … You should do it.’”

Harington described the experience as “really embarrassing.”

He added: “The people bringing round canapes were looking at me, thinking, ‘You sad man! You’ve come dressed as your character.’ I think the woman in the shop realized who I was as I was leaving.”

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“But that’s even sadder – me going to a fancy dress shop and buying a Jon Snow costume.”

Harington recently revealed how he “blew his load early” when proposing to his fianceeand “Game of Thrones” co-star Rose Leslie.

The couple has been dating since they met on the set of the fantasy series in 2012 and confirmed their engagement with an announcement in The Times.

The proposal didn’t go exactly to plan, as the famous actor got so excited that he asked Leslie too early.

Appearing on “The Jonathan Ross Show,” Harington said: “We did a little announcement in The Times…”

“I did have some plans to do it, I was going to string up some lights in some trees and do all the romantic stuff but we were in the country and we were under this beautiful night sky and had a log fire burning and red wine and I blew my load early.”

Realising what he’d said, he laughed: “Sorry that’s a really bad expression.”

“I was meant to do it the day after with the lights. What I meant to say was, I popped my question a bit early. Not blew my load.”


Why Some Fans Might Not Like Justice League’s Aquaman, According To Jason Momoa

While we’ve met Wonder Woman, Batman and Superman, a lot of the characters who are going to be popping up in Justice League are pretty new. One of these characters is Aquaman, who will play a key role in Justice League before getting his own solo movie in 2018. However, the actor who plays Aquaman, Jason Momoa, recently revealed some information about his character, noting that fans may not be in love with Justice League‘s version of the character. Here’s why:

Aquaman, he’s not even really Aquaman yet. He’s not the King of the Seven Seas. We don’t really get there until my solo movie, at the end. Really, it’s a huge growth for me. It’s a gigantic arc for Arthur Curry. It may be tough for a lot of fans to watch what they’re gonna see, how I portray him. But you gotta wait until we get to the solo movie to really know. Because he’s not King yet.


From what Jason Momoa had to say to Comic Book Movie, if you are a fan of Aquaman once he is King of the Seven Seas and has more of a grip on his destiny, you may not be a fan of the character in Justice League, or even at the beginning of the Aquaman movie. While we didn’t officially know that Aquaman would become the King of the Seven Seas at the end of his solo movie, it makes total sense. Justice League has already looked like a sort of coming-into-his-own story for Arthur Curry, and since Aquaman will be set after the events in Justice League, the next step in his story should be moving forward with the character. Plus, we previously learned that Orm, Aquaman’s half-brother, might be ruling over Atlantis during the beginning of Aquaman. It wouldn’t be the first example of Aquaman being a little different than his comics counterpart.


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Jason Momoa also said that his character will be going through a pretty big journey through his next two movies. When Justice League kicks off, Aquaman really won’t be Aquaman, at all. He also noted,

He doesn’t believe in himself, he doesn’t know what to do with the powers he has. He’s going through tons of loss. He hates Atlanteans. The fact that people are calling him ‘Aquaman’ right now — he couldn’t give two shits about anything Atlantean. So he’s really not quite there yet…

A lot of heroic origin stories feature characters who haven’t quite figured out who they are and what abilities they have, yet. Regardless, what seems to be different about Arthur Curry is his rejection of things that are right in front of him, like his knowledge of Atlanteans and his abilities. In a lot of ways, Justice League should be a movie about getting a team together, but it seems as if Arthur Curry, at least, will have a whole lot of other things going on.


You can find out exactly what that means when Justice League hits theaters on November 17. You can already pre-order tickets for the upcoming DC movie. Aquaman is hitting theaters on on December 21, 2018. Before that movie hits, you can take a look at what we know about Aquaman.


George Lucas

George Walton Lucas Jr. (born May 14, 1944) is an American filmmaker and entrepreneur.

Lucas is best known as the creator of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises, as well as the founder of Lucasfilm and Industrial Light & Magic. He was the chairman and CEO of Lucasfilm, before selling it to The Walt Disney Company in 2012.

Upon graduating from the University of Southern California in 1967, Lucas co-founded American Zoetrope with fellow filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola. Lucas wrote and directed THX 1138 (1971), based on his earlier student short Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB, which was a critical success but a financial failure. His next work as a writer-director was the film, American Graffiti (1973), inspired by his teen years in early 1960s Modesto, California, and produced through the newly founded Lucasfilm. The film was critically and commercially successful, and received five Academy Awardnominations including Best Picture.

Lucas’s next film, an epic space opera titled Star Wars (1977), went through a troubled production process; however, it was a surprise hit, becoming the highest-grossing film at the time, as well as a winner of six Academy Awards and a cultural phenomenon. Following the first Star Wars film, Lucas produced and co-wrote the following installments in the trilogy, The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Return of the Jedi (1983). Along with Steven Spielberg, Lucas co-created and wrote the Indiana Jones films Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), Temple of Doom (1984), and The Last Crusade (1989). Lucas also produced and wrote a variety of films through Lucasfilm in the 1980s and 1990s.

In 1997, Lucas re-released the original Star Wars trilogy as part of a Special Edition, where he made several alterations to the films; home media releases with further changes were released in 2004 and 2011. Lucas also returned to directing with the Star Wars prequel trilogy, consisting of The Phantom Menace (1999), Attack of the Clones (2002), and Revenge of the Sith (2005). He later collaborated on the story for the Indiana Jones sequel Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008), and served as the story writer and executive producer for the war film, Red Tails (2012).

Five of Lucas’s seven features are among the 100 highest-grossing movies at the North American box office, adjusted for ticket-price inflation.

Lucas is one of the American film industry’s most financially successful filmmakers, and has been personally nominated for four Academy Awards. Lucas is considered a significant figure in the New Hollywood era.

  • Kaminski, Michael (2008). The Secret History of Star Wars. Legacy Books Press;. ISBN 978-0978465230.
  • Rinzler, J.W. (2007). The Making of Star Wars: The Definitive Story Behind the Original Film. LucasBooks. ISBN 978-0345494764.

Further reading

Blood Money (2017) Movie Trailer #1 – John Cusak , Willa Fitzgerald

Channing Tatum’s Gambit Movie Finally Has A New Release Date

It would seem that the X-Men franchise’s Gambit movie is finally coming together. Late last week brought the news that Gore Verbinski has been in discussions about directing the feature, and now 20th Century Fox is confident enough to lock the comic book feature in for a February 14, 2019 release date.


When I spoke with producer Simon Kinberg earlier this year just prior to the theatrical release of Logan, he told me that star Channing Tatum was still “incredibly committed” to Gambit and that production was eyeing an early 2018 start. It looks like that will be exactly what happens in the future development of the project, given the release date news that was just dropped by Deadline.


The hitch that comes with this news is that we’re not entirely sure we can trust it. After all, this isn’t the first time that Gambit has had a release date, as it was originally supposed to come out on October 7, 2016. This target was ultimately missed because the film had the hardest time trying to keep a director on board. First Bennett Miller, Darren Aronofsky, Gareth Evans and J. C. Chandor all turned down the chance to helm. Then Rupert Wyatt officially signed on (in June 2015), but he wound up departing a few months later (September 2015). Doug Liman came aboard to replace him weeks after that (November 2015), but then he left the next summer (August 2016). The project has existed in limbo ever since.

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To Gambit‘s credit, things do seem to finally be coming together. Gore Verbinski is a seasoned blockbuster filmmaker, and, according to Channing Tatum, the studio’s development strategy has significantly changed thanks to the successes of Deadpool and Logan (implying the movie could be R-rated). There is a story to tell, with a narrative reportedly charting the mutant’s origins in New Orleans, and history with the villainous Mister Sinister, so it might actually all work out.


As for the release date itself, it’s noteworthy that Fox has had some luck with Valentines Day. The studio made the interesting choice to also make that the launching weekend for Deadpool last year, and while the film did face some apparent competition in Zoolander 2, it wound up becoming one of the biggest R-rated blockbusters of all time. Surely Fox is hoping that Gambit can follow suit in 2019, with the only current competition being the comedy Isn’t It Romantic starring Rebel Wilson.


After ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Crashed, Leave It To ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ To Save Autumn B.O. With $100M+ Opening

But with the domestic box office still 4.7% behind last year with $8.3 billion, if we’re going to beat last year’s record $11.4B, it will have to start with Disney/Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok who’ll pass the baton to Warner Bros.’/DC’s Justice League who’ll then pass to Disney/Pixar’s Coco and then finally Disney/Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi. 


Thor Ragnarok, the third in the series, hit tracking this morning, and it’s looking at a $100M-$110M start per industry figures with enormous strength among the four quadrants: Very strong with families, Hispanics and African Americans. Thor: Ragnarok in tracking has an enormous 85% in total awareness, 29% in unaided (those polled say it’s a movie they want to see without being prompted on the title, that number is huge), 61% definite interest, and 24% first choice (when you’re in the double digits at that level, that’s excellent). A $100M start would be huge for the threequel, beating its previous chapter, Thor: The Dark World‘s, $85.7M November opening four years ago.  Such projections this far out always come with a footnote because when a pic arrives this strong, it’s hard to determine how high it will go. Even if the domestic marketplace turns wonky, a $90M opening for Thor: Ragnarok wouldn’t be so bad.

The Thor franchise started off with Paramount distributing the movie under their deal with Marvel, opening the first installment to $65.7M (and a final $181M) in May 2011. When Disney took over Marvel, they pushed this franchise’s numbers up even more with $85.7M debut and $206.4M final stateside. Thor: Ragnarok is the third Marvel title to play in the November corridor following Thor: The Dark World and last year’s Doctor Strange ($85M, $232.6M). Together the first two Thor movies have made over $1.09 billion at the global B.O.


Guardians of the Galaxy writer-director James Gunn gave the film a rave review, saying on Facebook, “I don’t think any film of the modern era has captured the batshit crazy fun of 80’s classics like Flash Gordon and Buckaroo Banzai as well as Taika Waititi has here. I felt like I was fourteen watching a magical VHS tape that exploded into something grand. It’s the most colorful of all Marvel films — I mean, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is practically sepia-tone in comparison — and it’s also the funniest.”

Deadline saw Thor: Ragnarok on Tuesday night and it truly is a ton of fun in the Guardians of the Galaxy-kind of way, far from the moody tones of Thor: The Dark World. In the threequel, Thor’s sister, Hela (Cate Blanchett) takes over Asgard and paving the way for the planet’s Ragnarok aka its apocalypse. She has crushed Thor’s hammer to bits and the hero is stranded on the colorful planet Sakaar where he is forced to fight in gladiator battles, his first being against the Hulk. With Hulk’s help and Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Thor looks to make his way back to Asgard.


After ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Crashed, Leave It To ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ To Save Autumn B.O. With $100M+ Opening

How Andy Serkis Could Continue As The Star Of The Planet Of The Apes Franchise

Long before the modern trilogy and Tim Burton’s 2001 remake, Roddy McDowall, along with Kim Hunter, was the big star of the Planet of the Apes films. What made his role in the movies particularly special, however, is that he didn’t always play the same character. Because of the identity-hiding make-up that was required for his role as an evolved chimpanzee, he was able to play the roles of both Cornelius and Caesar across four movies. It’s part of the Planet of the Apes legacy, and according to Andy Serkis, could ultimately be the key for him to return and star in the next chapter of this franchise. Serkis told me,

Well, let’s say that there have been some discussions about that. That’s the great thing about this technology, is that it allows you… as I have done going from playing Caesar as a young infant to a mature adult, though the entirety of his life. So that basically means I could potentially play another character.


The more recent Planet of the Apes films, directed by Rupert Wyatt and Matt Reeves, have masterfully used motion capture technology in lieu of make-up when bringing its simians to life, but one continued benefit is that it still totally masks the actor in the role. I had the chance to sit down with Andy Serkis at San Diego Comic-Con this past summer, and when I brought up the Roddy McDowall approach, he confirmed that it is an idea that the franchise has been considering when looking at possibilities for future sequels.

SPOILER WARNING: The rest of this article contains major spoilers for War For The Planet Of The Apes. If you have not yet seen the film, and don’t wish to know major details about the ending, please bookmark this page and return after your screening!

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Of course, there is a reason why this is now an important subject to discuss. Audiences started on a long journey with Caesar that started with Rise of the Planet of the Apes back in 2011, but the most recent sequel saw his time come to an end. After successfully managing to save his fellow primates from the Colonel (Woody Harrelson), and bring them to the desert where they would make a new home, Caesar died as a proud leader in the final minutes of War For The Planet Of The Apes. It was a terribly sad cinematic moment, but it was also made clear that the character’s legacy will live on thanks to his young son, Cornelius. Naturally, it is the role of Cornelius that fans would expect Andy Serkis to play — a perfect nod to the contributions of Roddy McDowall.


The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead Will Be Crossing Over After All

We don’t know when. We don’t know how. We don’t know who. But at New York Comic Con this weekend, Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman announced that his two popular AMC zombie shows will soon be crossing over.

“There is one character that is going to go from one show, that I will not name, to another show, that I will not name,” Kirkman said.“This is a huge event in the world of The Walking Dead.”

It’s so huge, the official Twitter account even posted some art.

Image result for The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead Will Be Crossing Over After All

Neither The Walking Dead nor Fear the Walking Dead uses specific dates, but it’s pretty clear that Fear the Walking Dead, which is set in the Southwest, is a few years behind The Walking Dead, which is set in the Southeast. (The Walking Deadis about to start season eight, while Fear is just finishing season three.) The time difference would likely make it easier for a Walking Dead character to cameo on Fear the Walking Dead, since we know that character is still alive a few years later. If it was reversed, it could be considered a spoiler.

And yet, maybe that could be a cool story twist too. There’s really no way to tell just yet. Kirkman and his colleagues on both shows have played down this potential crossover for years, but now it’s happening anyway. We just know, for fans of both shows, it’ll be nice to see the shared universe finally come together, whichever way it happens.


Star Wars – The Last Jedi Trailer #2 2017

Creed 2 Starts Filming In February 2018

Creed 2, the sequel to the smash hit Rocky franchise revival Creed, is set to go before cameras in Philadelphia beginning in February. Sylvester Stallone and Michael B. Jordan are expected to return for the second installment, which is being written by Stallone himself.

The Rocky franchise had been dormant for years when writer/director Ryan Coogler brought it back to life in 2015 with Creed, a drama focusing on the relationship between an aging, cancer-ridden Rocky Balboa (Stallone) and up-and-coming boxer Adonis Creed (Jordan), the son of Rocky’s late nemesis-turned-friend Apollo Creed. Creed reinvigorated the Rocky series while giving a significant shot in the arm to Stallone’s career, earning the veteran star an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor.

Stallone has been hard at work writing a script for the inevitable Creed sequel, and now the film is reportedly set to go before cameras in Philadelphia beginning on February 8th, 2018 according to My Entertainment World (via Omega Underground). No director has yet been named for the project, which is aiming for a late 2018 release date.

After a number of teases from Stallone, we know that Creed 2 will see the return of Ivan Drago, the cartoonishly villainous Russian boxer who in Rocky IV killed Apollo Creed in the ring and was later defeated by Rocky in a match that symbolically affirmed American superiority over the Soviet Union (it was the Reagan era after all). Lundgren is set to return as Drago, but how exactly the character will fit into the Creed sequel is not yet known. It would seem natural that Adonis Creed would want a shot at revenge against the man who killed his father (even though Rocky presumably already achieved that revenge himself by humiliating Drago in front of the world), but actually placing an aged Drago in the ring against Adonis might be too silly for belief. Given the age-gap between Adonis and Drago, it might make more sense to give Drago a son who would then battle Adonis in the ring, carrying on the Creed theme of mentors handing the reins to their protégées.


‘Blade Runner 2049’ Arrives With $50M Overseas; ‘It’ Tops $600M WW

The numbers we’re seeing internationally are in line with where Sony had BR2049debuting ahead of the weekend. Predictions from outside the Culver City lot’s gates were pegged closer to the mid-$50Ms. But industry sources see the $50.2M bow as pretty good internationally, particularly the UK and Australia figures which are higher than expected given the U.S. opening.


The top market was the UK with an $8M launch, on par with comp Interstellar and ahead of Mad Max: Fury Road (+15%). Prior to release in the UK last week, folks at industry gatherings were buzzing about the fantastic reviews on the Ryan Gosling/Harrison Ford-starrer, particularly The Guardian’s 5-star praise party. The film, however, did not score No. 1s in all markets this session, notably France where a local title from the Intouchables guys landed on top, and in other hubs where IT refuses to quit.

Despite all this activity, the No. 1 international movie this session hails from Chinawhere the National Day holiday period has wrapped. Leading proceedings is Never Say Die from the Mahua Fun Age troupe with about $66M for the FSS. The movie crossed $220M on its second Sunday in the Middle Kingdom.

Turning back to BR2049, Asian play will be key for the film. The best markets ultimately should include a mix of the UK, Korea, Japan, China and France. China is dated for November 10 while Japan, a huge market for Blade Runner 2049, is going October 27. Korea is October 12 and in Europe, it will have a chance to build if it can keep screens — the next major release on the horizon is Thor: Ragnarok starting October 24.

Next week is about expansion internationally. There are a number of film festivals running and so awards season movies are getting a push, but there is no major wide rollout. Blade Runner heads to Korea, notably, while Kingsman: The Golden Circlewill bow in France and Fox’s War For The Planet Of The Apes finally hits Japan. Universal/Blumhouse’s Happy Death Day gets a head start in such markets as Brazil, Taiwan and the Netherlands and STX’s interplanetary adventure The Space Between Us lands in China just as its Foreigner bows Stateside.


‘Blade Runner 2049’ Arrives With $50M Overseas; ‘It’ Tops $600M WW; ‘Despicable 3’ Hops Past ‘Zootopia’ – Intl Box Office

DC’s heroes unite in the new Justice League trailer

A new trailer for DC’s superhero ensemble movie Justice League has arrived, and it paints a bleak picture for the post-Superman world we were left with after the events of Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Superman’s death looms heavy over the trailer. It opens with Lois Lane dreaming about becoming engaged to Clark Kent in Kansas, only to wake up and find him still missing. We then get a glimpse of how the rest of the world is feeling his loss. TV newscasters say that violence, war, and terrorism is on the rise. But there’s darker things on the horizon. Bruce Wayne tells Diana Prince that he’s been dreaming of something dark coming for the world, and they begin to recruit other heroes to unite fend off the coming Parademon invasion. The trailer shows off a bit more of the battles that we’ve seen teased in other trailers. “Divided, we are not enough,” Bruce Wayne tells the other heroes, “the world needs Superman, and I made him a promise, which is why I’ve brought you together.”

Justice League is coming after DC said that it was scaling back its interconnected superhero universe after it has largely underwhelmed audiences and at the box office. The future of the universe will likely follow in the steps of this year’s wildly successful Wonder Woman, with films that only lightly connect to one another, rather than continuing to follow in the same model as that of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe.

The film will hit theaters on November 17th.



Golmaal Again | Releasing 20th October | Rohit Shetty | Ajay Devgn

Jackie Chan Teases ‘Rush Hour 4’: “We Just Agreed”

“Which one of y’all kicked me?” Hard to believe it’s been nearly 20 years since LAPD Detective James Carter took a boot to the face from that unknown assailant in Rush Hour. Now it sounds like Chris Tucker’s manic character might be reunited with Jackie Chan’s Hong Kong Detective Inspector Lee for a fourth adventure in the East-beats-West series.

Chan gave a radio interview Thursday in which he teased that a Rush Hour 4 in very much in the works — the first misadventure in the series since 2007. “For the last seven years, we’ve been turning down the script, turning down the script,” Chan told L.A. outlet Power 106’s The Cruz Show. “Yesterday, we just agreed.” Watch the video above.

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Chan, who was on the air promoting his newest film, STX’s October 13 opener The Foreigner with Pierce Brosnan, also said: “The script probably at the end of this month will have a second draft, and next year, probably [we will] start. I hope — if Chris Tucker agrees.”

The original Rush Hour grossed $244 million worldwide for New Line Cinema and cemented the Hong Kong-born Chan as an English-language action star, after he had broken through in the U.S. with 1994’s Rumble in the Bronx. Its success led to his pairing with Owen Wilson for 2000’s Shanghai Noon, which spawned a sequel two years later. The buddy-cop action-comedy Rush Hour series with Tucker continued with Rush Hour 2 ($347M WW in 2001) and Rush Hour 3 ($258M, 2007). Brett Ratner directed all three.


Jackie Chan Teases ‘Rush Hour 4’: “We Just Agreed”

‘Pacific Rim: Uprising’ Takes Place Surprisingly Long After the First One

For those of you who’ve been waiting to see more skyscraper tall mechanical monsters clash with the flesh and blood variety, we’ve got some good news for you. The next chapter of Guillermo del Toro’s massive mechs versus monsters saga, Pacific Rim 2, just took a huge, lumbering step forward.

Talking to Yahoo, del Toro, who delivers his gothic haunted house horror film Crimson Peak later this year, revealed that, after many false starts and pushed release dates, Pacific Rim 2 will indeed begin filming this November. And just in case you were wondering, it’s going to be big, and end big. He said:

We have an epic battle at the end [that] we started designing a couple weeks ago.

As it stands, we don’t know much about the plot of Pacific Rim 2, and probably won’t for some time. It reportedly picks up a few years after the first film, and has more of a focus on the monstrous Kaiju, the creatures from another dimension. Presumably this means that, after thinking they were banished back to where they came from on the other side of the interdimensional rift at the bottom of the ocean, they have found a way to come back and once again we need to turn to the Jaegers, the giant mechanical suits designed to combat this particular menace.


To be fair, I don’t care too much about the specific plot subtleties and dynamics. That wasn’t really Pacific Rim’s strong suit, and I still loved it. Whatever we get is gravy, but as long at Guillermo del Toro is at the helm, and this film has the same feeling of glee, like a small kid playing in the dirt, smashing his toys into one another, and making explosion noises with his mouth, that’s all I need.

There hasn’t been any casting news to speak of in regards to Pacific Rim 2, so it remains to be seen if we’ll encounter any familiar faces. Del Toro has given strong indications that we will see the return of Charlie Day’s Kaiju obsessed Dr. Newton Geiszler and Burn Gorman’s Gottlieb, but we don’t know if Jaeger pilots like Charlie Hunnam’s Raleigh Beckett and Rinko Kikuchi’s Mako Mori will be back. Both Hunnam and Gorman are in Crimson Peak, so they at least have a current working relationship with del Toro that could pay off.

There are going to be some interesting questions to be answered. Like what are Geiszler and Gottlieb up to now that they don’t have Kaiju to study? What do you do with the Jaegers when there is no threat (fingers crossed it turns out like Robot Jox)? Are they just rusting away somewhere? Are the pilots just homeless and unemployed now? I can see the two scientists cooking up some wacky scheme to peer into the other dimension to check up on the monstrous horde, only to have it backfire and allow them back into our world, but that’s pure supposition.

However the story turns out, we’ve got a while to wait, as production for Pacific Rim 2was halted indefinitely, and now the release date is set for February 23, 2018.


The Famous Movie That Inspired Black Panther’s Design

The highlight of the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been seeing such iconic characters and locations from the comics come to life on screen. However, it seems that the comics haven’t been the only influence for the big screen adaptations. Recently Hannah Beachler, the production designer for Black Panther revealed one movie that significantly inspired the look of Wakanda, the original Blade Runner.


The reveal came in response to a fan who asked Hannah Beachler on Twitter if Blade Runner had inspired her, or director Ryan Coogler, in their vision of what Wakanda would look like. Beachler responder that the Ridley Scott film was very much an influencer for her. Specifically, she says that the density of the city, as well as the way that tech was forward thinking, were the primary ways that the film guided her design.


It’s not hard to see the influence. A look at this image of Wakanda from the Black Panther trailer shows a city very much like the version of Los Angeles we see in Blade Runner. The only real difference being that we Los Angeles is in almost perpetual darkness, while Wakanda at least gets some sun.

Wakanda Black Panther

We certainly see how the density of the city influenced Wakanda as all the buildings, including some pretty impressive skyscrapers, are all very close together. We also have similar modes of transportation as flying vehicles seem to be the method of choice for getting around the city. If the city is this dense, one assumes it has a pretty massive population as well, making the need for verticality, both in the buildings and the transportation, important.


Of course, there’s another movie that also took Blade Runner’s aesthetics as a major influence, the sequel which is hitting theaters on Friday. Blade Runner 2049takes all the technology from the original and advances it by 30 years.


Blade Runner inspired a lot of futuristic looks in popular culture so it’s far from surprising that it influenced Black Panther. The one interesting difference here is that Wakanda is a modern city, simply one that is more technologically advanced than the rest of the world. It’s essentially the future but one that modern people could potentially visit.


We’ll get to see more of Wakanda when Black Panther arrives in theaters in February. Blade Runner 2049 is in theaters on Friday.


Netflix Will Get The New SHAFT Two Weeks After It Hits Theaters

We’ve known for some time that a new Shaft was in the works, one that would find Samuel L. Jackson returning to the role he played in John Singleton’s 2000 film…along with Shaft’s son, to be played by Jessie T. Usher. What we didn’t know, apparently, was that New Line has been working on a deal with Netflix to co-finance the film, one that will result in a most unusual rollout.

Says Deadline:

“Sources say that New Line and Netflix are nearly closed on the untitled Shaft reboot. Netflix will pay more than half the film’s high $30 million budget, in exchange for international rights and the ability to put the film on its streaming outside the U.S. two weeks after New Line releases theatrically in the United States. The film will begin production in December.”

Yes, Netflix and New Line are splitting the cost on the next Shaft (which, by the way, will be directed by Tim Story and written by Kenya Barris), ponying up $15M apiece to make the film a reality. Two weeks after New Line puts the film into theaters, Netflix will debut the film on their omnipresent streaming service.

One suspects this will only add further fuel to the “Is Netflix destroying cinema?” argument, but let’s be honest: are you in the mood to have that particular argument today? Maybe let’s table that one for now.

Or maybe not. If you feel like parsing through this, feel free to hit the comments below. Everyone else should standby for further Untitled Shaft Movie updates as they become available.


CRASH PAD Trailer (2017) Nina Dobrev, Domhnall Gleeson Movie HD

‘Blade Runner 2049’ Rave Reviews Bolster Social Media Buzz

“Blade Runner 2049” topped social media buzz last week with 83,000 new conversations in the wake of the movie’s strong reviews, according to media-measurement firm comScore and its PreAct service.

The follow-up to Ridley Scott’s 1982 sci-fi classic “Blade Runner” has earned an impressive 96% score on Rotten Tomatoes. Variety’s Peter Debruge wrote in his reviewthat the film “delves deep into the existential concerns suggested by the earlier film, as screenwriters Hampton Fancher (who also co-wrote the original) and Michael Green raise evocative questions about human-android relations and the nuances that will one day be used to tell them apart.”

“Blade Runner 2049” is being distributed domestically by Warner Bros. through its output deal with Alcon Entertainment. Sony is the international distributor and production partner with Alcon Entertainment. The reboot, directed by Denis Villeneuve, stars Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford, who reprises his role of Rick Deckard.

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Early box office forecasts had projected a domestic launch of at least $40 million.


Disney-Marvel’s “Thor: Ragnarok” generated 79,000 new conversations last week as the studio revealed new artwork on Sept. 27, and an international trailer, poster, and featurette the next day. That drove the total number of new conversations to nearly 1.2 million, more than a month before its Nov. 3 opening.


‘Blade Runner 2049’ Rave Reviews Bolster Social Media Buzz

‘The Originals’ Season 5 Spoilers News: Marcel Has a Huge Surprise for Klaus in Premiere

Marcel (Charles Michael Davis) has not forgotten his vendetta against Klaus (Joseph Morgan) in the upcoming final season of “The Originals.”

Spoilers for the new installment reveal that the former allies will once again be each other’s greatest enemy. Marcel is obviously still not over his hatred for his sire after what he and his family did to Davina (Danielle Campbell). Although their fight was put on hold because of The Hollow, it is expected to continue now that the dark force is safely locked inside the Originals’ bodies. The trailer hinted of Marcel’s next plan to take down Klaus, and it may or may not involve Elijah (Daniel Gillies).

Since Elijah was one of the Mikaelsons who holds part of The Hollow’s soul, he is supposed to stay away from the rest of his family for all eternity. He has willed himself to forget everything to stop himself from searching for them. Marcel appears to be taking advantage of his predicament. He will come to see Elijah to urge him to return to New Orleans and reunite with his brother. The promo suggests that Marcel will succeed, thus the surprise on Klaus’ face when Elijah suddenly turns up in one of the bars in the city.

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Meanwhile, spoilers reveal that there is still a chance that Elijah and Hayley (Phoebe Tonkin) will end up together. Executive producer Julie Plec has revealed that they are still rooting for the couple. Although Hayley and Elijah may not be together in the first part of the final season, they may still end up with each other in the end. While waiting for that moment, Hayley will try to distract herself from negative thoughts by dating a human named Declan (Torrance Coombs).

“I love Hayley and Elijah and I do hope they can find peace in eternity,” Plec told the audience at the San Diego Comic-Con. “I don’t know how quickly that will be able to happen, but it’s not something that I take lightly.”

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“The Originals” season 5 will air sometime in 2018.


‘Justice League’: 5 New Posters Bring Some Color to the DC World

The Justice League is here to save the day, and they’ll do it in style. 

Warner Bros. has unveiled five new character posters the upcoming Justice League film, spotlighting each hero (save for Henry Cavill’s Superman) in their own vivid hue. The characters all stand in profile, looking toward the viewers’ left, with their corresponding insignias emblazoned over the Justice League one at the very bottom of the poster. 

We see Jason Momoa’s Arthur Curry/Aquaman against a bright green background, Gal Gadot’s Diana Prince/Wonder Woman in a punchy yellow-orange shade, Ben Affleck’s Bruce Wayne/Batman likely showing off his smolder against royal blue (accented from behind by a golden yellow), Ray Fisher’s Victor Stone/Cyborg looking fierce in a purple-gray color, and Ezra Miller’s Barry Allen/The Flash displaying his fittingly flashy side in candy-apple red. 

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These colors coordinate with the ones seen in batch of previously released character posters that show Aquaman in green, Wonder Woman in orange, Batman in dark blue, Cyborg in graphite gray, and the Flash in bright red. According to, more information on these prints will be available next month. 

While the DC Extended Universe (the cinematic world’s official name is still pending) has gained a reputation for being dark, gritty, and brooding over the past few years, these Justice League promo images seem to prove that the forthcoming film will take an optimistic spin on the beloved heroes. The movie’s trailer, which was released a few months ago, shows that Justice League will be tonally much lighter than Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and these posters serve to bolster that claim. 

Joining the fab five (plus Superman) for Justice League Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor, Willem Dafoe as Nuidis Vulko, Billy Crudup as Henry Allen, Jeremy Irons as Alfred Pennyworth, Diane Lane as Martha Kent, Connie Nielsen as Queen Hippolyta, Amber Heard as Mera, Kiersey Clemons as Iris West. J.K. Simmons’ Commissioner Gordon and Amy Adams’ Lois Lane round out the cast. 

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Here’s the official plot synopsis for Justice League: “Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his newfound ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to find and recruit a team of metahumans to stand against this newly awakened threat. But despite the formation of this unprecedented league of heroes—Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash—it may already be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.”

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‘Once Upon a Time’: Chinese fantasy-romance features complex plot, crazy visuals

Personal identity is as complicated as the plot in “Once Upon a Time,” a CGI-heavy Chinese fantasy-romance. Heroine Bai Qian (Liu Yifei) is a goddess who can transform into a multi-tailed white fox. She’s also the exact double of Susu, the lost love of Prince Ye Hua (Yang Yang), who looks just like — well, that’s supposed to be a surprise.

The movie was directed by Zhao Xiaoding and Hollywood special-effects veteran Anthony LaMolinara (whose credits include 2004’s “Spider-Man 2”). The elaborately costumed actors travel through a computer-generated magical universe and interact with animated characters (mostly realistic, although one incongruously resembles Sprout, Green Giant’s former spokes-vegetable). The imaginative visuals upstage the battle scenes and amorous intrigues.

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“Once Upon a Time” derives from a Chinese novel, “Three Lives Three Worlds, Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms” (published in English as “To the Sky Kingdom”). The story is so involved that a recent Chinese-TV adaptation of the book ran for 58 episodes. This movie’s condensed telling is somewhat bewildering, although the essentials eventually become clear. But then they’re really just a pretext for such fairy-tale wonders as an underwater city, a living island and a hummingbird air force.


Keanu Reeves Wants Tilda Swinton in John Wick 3

Lionsgate is already moving forward with John Wick Chapter 3, and now fans are wondering what new characters will come forth in this next installment, the final chapter in the John Wick trilogy. If Keanu Reeves has his way, it’s possible that the actor will reunite with Oscar winner Tilda Swinton, who he starred with in Constantine and Thumbsucker, both released in 2005, although he only had scenes with her in Constantine. Here’s what the actor had to say when asked if he’d like to bring Tilda Swinton on board for John Wick 3.

“You know, I had the chance to work with her, I was in two films with her, but had the chance to work with her once, I’m onboard with that. We run into each other once in a while socially out there in the world. She’s a remarkable person and actress, so I’m all aboard with that!”

While there is no indication that writer Derek Kolstad is writing a role for the actress, or if she would even be on board with the idea, this wouldn’t be the first time that the franchise reunited Keanu Reeves with one of his former co-stars. In this year’s critical and commercial hit John Wick Chapter 2, Keanu Reeves and Laurence Fishburne were reunited, more than a decade after the stars portrayed Neo and Morpheus in the iconic Matrix trilogy. With this movie already set to be the final chapter of this trilogy, it wouldn’t be surprising if the studio pulled out all the stops to ensure this is an even bigger hit that the first two movies. They’re already taking the first step by giving this a sequel a summer release date.


We reported earlier this month that a John Wick 3 release date has been set for May 17, 2019, and while it currently has no direct competition in that date, it’s already being surrounded by a number of highly-anticipated movies. Kicking off the 2019 summer movie season will be Marvel’s Avengers 4 on May 3, 2019, followed by STX’s Uglydoll adaptation and TriStar’s The Rosie Project on May 10. One week after John Wick 3 hits theaters, it will go up against two highly-anticipated projects on May 24, 2019, Disney’s live-action Aladdin remake and Warner Bros.’ Minecraft adaptation.

There’s even the possibility of Samuel L. Jackson joining John Wick 3, with the actor revealing in a March interview that he’d much rather star in this movie than make a stand alone Nick Fury movie for Marvel Studios. Tilda Swinton is coming off starring in a pair of Netflix original movies, War Machine, which debuted in late May, and Okja, which debuted in late June, along with her slightly-controversial role as The Ancient One in Marvel’s Doctor Strange. She will next be seen in the Suspiria remake as Madame Blanc while also lending her voice to Wes Anderson’s new film Isle of Dogs. As for a reunion with Keanu Reeves, People did report that, back in 2013, when the actress was promoting Snowpiercer, she asked in “mock frustration,” Where is Mr. Keanu Reeves by the way? I would like to see him.” Whether or not these comments on both sides lead to a reunion in John Wick 3 remains to be seen.


The Matrix is reportedly getting a reboot

The Matrix is getting a remake. That’s according to The Hollywood Reporter, which says that Warner Bros. is in the early stages of developing a rebooted version of the 1999 cyberpunk classic, with Creed star Michael B. Jordan as the potential headliner.


Zak Penn is currently in talks to write a treatment for the reboot, The Hollywood Reporter claims. Penn is best known for his script work on several superhero movies, providing story assistance for other established writers on X-Men: The Last StandThe Avengers, and Elektra. Jordan, too, has yet to formally commit to the project (which is itself in early stages), but is reportedly in talks for a major role.

Original Matrix producer Joel Silver reportedly approached Warner Bros. with the idea of creating a new film in the franchise, but The Hollywood Reporter says the studio was worried about a range of issues, including his reputation for budgetary excess, and his relationship with Matrix trilogy creators the Wachowskis. The producer was also reported to have sold his interest in the Matrix movies in 2012 for some $30 million.

The publication says that the Wachowskis — who both wrote and directed the original movie and its maligned sequels — are not currently involved in the new project, but speculates that Warner Bros. would want their approval at the very least before continuing. The siblings are seen to have more value to fans than Silver, although they may not end up taking a major role in production. Original star Keanu Reeves had indicated that he would be willing to return for another Matrix movie were the siblings involved, but THR says Warner Bros. is likely to choose another star and director — even if Michael B. Jordan does not sign on.

There’s no set date for the remake to start production yet, and like the planned Matrix TV show, the project could still get canceled. Some within Warner Bros. apparently see the property as untouchable after its monumental success, but as The Hollywood Reporter notes, the potential of a new cinematic universe built on one of the most engaging movie worlds of the last two decades could be too tempting to pass up.


Amazon is developing three new sci-fi shows in an attempt to find the next Game of Thrones

Earlier this month, Variety reported that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos issued a mandate to the company’s studio: produce more “high-end drama series with a global appeal.” This morning, Variety reported that the company is following that order by moving forward with three major science fiction shows: adaptations of Larry Niven’s Ringworld, Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash, and Greg Rucka’s Lazarus.

Since launching the studio in 2010, Amazon has earned considerable acclaim for its shows, such as The Man in the High CastleTransparent, and The Grand Tour, but it seems that Bezos is setting his sights a bit higher. In an interview with Variety earlier this month, the head of Amazon Studios, Roy Price, said that Amazon is looking to create “big shows that can make the biggest difference around the world,” by working on shows that appeal to a global audience.

Price compared their efforts to trying to create the next Game of Thrones, saying that HBO’s fantasy drama is akin to Jaws or Star Wars in the television world. “Everybody wants a big hit and certainly that’s the show of the moment in terms of being a model for a hit,” he said. Variety also says that Price sent an email to Amazon employees, saying that 2018 and 2019 are shaping up to be major years for the company. “Our overall content investment is increasing, which will allow us to continue to meet customer demand around the world for high quality and engaging programming,” he reportedly wrote in the email.

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Earlier this year, the studio brought on former Fox executive Sharon Tal Yguado as head of event series. She was tasked with bringing major science fiction, fantasy, and horror television shows to the studio and Amazon’s Prime subscribers. Amazon has dipped its toes into science fiction television with with The Man in the High Castle, its forthcoming anthology series Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams, and a pilot for a show called Oasis, which debuted earlier this year. The three shows that Amazon is developing could certainly become the same type of television juggernauts as Game of ThronesStranger Things, or The Handmaid’s Tale, and Variety notes that the studio is putting “significant production investment,” into each.


“Generational Sins” 2017 Official Teaser Trailer – 4K HD

‘Coming to America’ Sequel Moving Forward

Paramount Pictures is moving forward on a sequel to the 1988 Eddie Murphy comedy “Coming to America” with Jonathan Levine on board to direct from a script by “Black-ish” creator Kenya Barris.

Levine, whose credits include “Snatched,” “The Night Before,” “50/50,” and “Warm Bodies,” will direct from a script that Barris will rewrite from a screenplay by original writers Barry Blaustein and David Sheffield. Kevin Misher is producing.

Murphy is involved with the development of the sequel, although there’s no deal in place yet for him to star. Kevin Misher is the producer.


The original movie was directed by John Landis, with Murphy playing a charming African prince who traveled to New York City to escape an arranged marriage. Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, Shari Headley, and John Amos co-starred in the “Coming to America,” which was a major hit, grossing nearly $300 million at the worldwide box office.

Humorist Art Buchwald sued the studio on grounds that the film’s idea was stolen from his 1982 script treatment and won the breach of contract part of the suit. The parties later settled the case prior to an appeal going to trial.


Barris co-wrote the comedy “Girls Trip” with Tracy Oliver and worked on New Line’s “Son of Shaft.”

Levine is repped by CAA. Barris is repped by CAA, Principato-Young Entertainment, and Morris Yorn.


‘Coming to America’ Sequel Moving Forward With Kenya Barris, Jonathan Levine

The six-episode final season of the hit HBO drama will cost an otherworldly $15 million per episode

Westeros might have a debt problem, but Game of Thrones is rolling in dough.

The six-episode final season of the hit HBO drama will cost an otherworldly $15 million per episode, Variety reports, while others have hinted that each installment could actually cost significantly more than that.

That would make the show’s last season the most expensive television season of all time on a per-episode basis. A few individual episodes of other TV shows have cost more—the pilot for HBO’s Westworld, for instance, reportedly cost $25 million—but no series has ever been so consistently costly across an entire season.

Some networks have come close. Netflix’s The Crown and recently-canceled The Get Down both cost about $10 million per episode. Many other shows on American cable and streaming TV cost in the $6-to-$8 million range. But when it comes to spending, no one does it better than Thrones.


Compared to its current inflated production costs, the fantasy series was produced quite modestly when it first aired, at just $6 million per episode—on par with the first seasons of Netflix’s Stranger Things and FX’s American Crime Story. As Thrones has become more popular, though, it’s invested in more shooting locations, bigger and better visual effects, and an ever-growing list of talent. The series has filmed in Northern Ireland, Croatia, Malta, Spain, Iceland, and Morocco.

Elsewhere across TV, rising production costs are due to a confluence of factors:

  • more investment by deep-pocketed streaming services like Netflix;
  • increasingly competitive bidding wars over talent;
  • a shift in focus to big, bold, original dramas;
  • growing concern over growing subscriber numbers than improving dwindling ad revenues.

Variety offered another theory: Inexperienced filmmakers and crew members don’t know don’t know how to run a tight ship.

Industry insiders privately speculate that the strain on the talent pool of line producers and technical, craft and stunt crew members has been a factor in what seems to be a jump in the number of on-set accidents in recent months.

Simply put, it’s impossible to have seasoned people at the helm of every show when the volume of scripted series production spiked 71% between 2011 and 2016 — or from 266 series in 2011 to 455 in 2016, according to FX Networks Research. The 2017 tally is projected to top 500.

The $90 million final season of Game of Thrones will debut on HBO in either 2018 or 2019.


The age of $15-million-per-hour TV is upon us

Stranger Things Season 2 Story Revolves Around the ‘Shadow Monster’

Stranger Things showrunners Matt and Ross Duffer tease story details for season 2, including that the mystery surrounds a shadow monster. Season 1 of Stranger Thingsdebuted on Netflix last summer, unraveling the mysterious disappearance of Will Byers (Noah Schnapp), the appearance of a young telekinetic girl named Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), and the supernatural creature called the Demogorgon in the small town of Hawkins, Indiana, in the 1980s. Viewers fell in love with the Goonies-like band of kids at the core of Stranger Things – which includes Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard), Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), and Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin) – as they tried to find their friend and fight the Demogorgon.

The series also followed Will’s mother Joyce (Winona Ryder) as she worked with police chief Jim Hopper (David Harbour) to find her son, while Will’s brother Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) and Mike’s sister Nancy (Natalia Dyer) conducted their own investigation into the Demogorgon and the Upside Down. Season 2 of Stranger Things, which has been given the theatrical moniker of Stranger Things 2, will introduce some new players to Hawkins, including Sean Astin’s Bob Newby, Sadie Sink’s Max and Dacre Montgomery’s Billy. Now, some of the major characters of Stranger Things 2 grace the covers of EW’s latest issue, while the Duffers reveal new details about the season.


While talking to EW, the Duffer brothers revealed the season 2 mystery will revolve around something called the “shadow monster” – a massive creature that appears to Will in a PTSD-like vision of the Upside Down, which were teased in the Stranger Things season 1 finale. Ross explained, “It’s all connected to this singular threat, which is tied into this shape that Will sees in the sky.” Matt went on to say of the entire nine-hour season, “Each episode is building on the last one. It gets much crazier than it ever got in season one.” Take a look at the Stranger Things EW covers in the gallery below.


Casey Affleck’s Production Company Signs Deal With Amazon Studios

Casey Affleck’s newly launched production company Sea Change Media has signed an exclusive first look deal with Amazon Studios, Variety has learned. It makes sense that Affleck’s banner would want to hang its hat with Amazon. The actor picked up an Oscar for best actor for his work in “Manchester by the Sea,” which Amazon bought out of Sundance and successfully pushed for awards attention.

The two-year deal will cover both film and television projects. Sea Change Media says it wants to back stores that shine a light on underrepresented voices. It goes on to say that its lodestar will be a “philosophy of inclusivity and collaboration.” Hollywood has been engulfed in a debate about the lack of films about women and people of color in recent years, so Sea Change Media is clearly looking to help promote more diversity in film and television. Whitaker Lader, who previously worked at the Sundance Institute, serves as the company’s head of production and development.

Amazon Studios has been signing a number of exclusive first-look production deals this year as it looks to bolster its development slate. It previously singed pacts with Bona Fide Productions ( “Little Miss Sunshine”), Killer Films (“Carol”) and Le Grisbi Productions (“Birdman”).


“This deal with Casey exemplifies our focus in expanding Amazon Studios’ relationships with top-notch filmmakers and content creators,” said Roy Price, head of Amazon Studios, in a statement. “Our goal is to be in business with high caliber talent in order to grow our slate of quality content for our customers.”


Casey Affleck’s Production Company Signs Deal With Amazon Studios (EXCLUSIVE)

Netflix adds HDR support for iPhone X and iPad Pro

Netflix already streams HDR video on the new Apple TV 4K, so it only makes sense for the company to add support for Apple’s HDR-ready iOS devices as well. The latest update for Netflix’s app does just that, so you’ll be able to watch movies and TV shows with high dynamic range on the iPad Pro (10.5-inch and 2017 12.9-inch) and the upcoming iPhone X.

If you’re unsure of what content is available in HDR, the easiest way to find something to watch is to just search for “HDR” right in Netflix. The selection consists entirely of Netflix’s original shows, documentaries, and movies.


‘Stranger Things’ Writer Justin Doble Moves to Amazon Studios

Stranger Things writer-producer Justin Doble has signed an overall deal with the company, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

Through the pact, Doble will develop genre TV projects for Amazon prime video.

“We have long admired Justin’s ability to create stories and characters that stoke fans’ passion,” said Amazon Studios’ head of event series Sharon Tal Yguado. “He has contributed to some of the best genre out there, and we are excited to collaborate with him as we build a slate of high-profile shows.”

Doble comes to Amazon after two seasons on Netflix’s breakout hit, for which he also earned two Writers Guild Award nominations. Prior to that, Doble wrote for The Path, Into the Badlands and Fringe, where he got his start as part of the Warner Bros. Television Writers’ Workshop. He is repped by UTA and The Shuman Company.


Doble’s deal comes as Amazon looks to redefine its original series slate and launch the next global hit a la HBO’s critical and commercial smash Game of Thrones. Recent original series at the company have launched to minor buzz, and Amazon earned only 15 Emmy nominations. compared with Netflix’s whopping 91 nominations and 20 wins. Another rival, Hulu, was the first-ever streamer to win a best series Emmy award for drama The Handmaid’s Tale, in addition to nine other wins. Amazon won two.

In recent weeks, Amazon has canceled several series, including pricey period dramas Z: The Beginning of Everything and The Last Tycoon. Its upcoming series include the Jack Ryan TV reboot from Carlton Cuse; Matthew Weiner’s Romanoffs anthology series, said to have cost the company $75 million; and a David O. Russell original series starring Robert De Niro and Julianne Moore that earned a two-season pickup at the company.


JUST GETTING STARTED Official Trailer (2017) Morgan Freeman

Breathe Official Trailer #2 (2017) Andrew Garfield, Claire Foy

Pablo Escobar’s Brother Wants Netflix To Provide Cartel Hitmen As Bodyguards For ‘Narcos’

Following the death of Carlos Muñoz, a 37-year-old locations manager on Narcos who was found dead in his car in Mexico last week, the brother of drug lord Pablo Escobar wants Netflix to provide hitmen as bodyguards.

“You have to eliminate all threats,” Roberto De Jesus Escobar Gaviria, who worked as an accountant for the Medellín Cartel (he was also employed as the “chief of the hitmen”), told The Hollywood Reporter. “When I was walking in the jungle one day, I had a bag with $2 million in $100 bills. The army was searching for me and Pablo at this time. Suddenly, we are being shot at.”

He continued, “Both me and Pablo, along with a few security people, start running towards a small channel of water, we swim away. This was all done without guns. If you have the intellect, you don’t need to use weapons. If not, you have to. In this case, Netflix should provide hitmen to their people as security.”

This isn’t the first time Escobar Gaviria has voiced his frustration with Netflix. In 2016, the founder of Escobar Inc. demanded $1 billion from the streaming service for unauthorized usage of content. “To this date, I am one of the few survivors of the Medellin cartel,” he wrote, “and I was Pablo’s closest ally, managing his accounting and he is my brother for life. I think nobody else in the world is alive to determine the validity of the materials, but me.”

He told The Hollywood Reporter that “Netflix is scared,” and that “they sent us a long letter to threaten us.” Escobar Gaviria, who claims to “own all the trademarks to all of our names and also for the Narcos brand,” added, “Right now, we are in discussions with them through our attorneys [to] obtain our $1 billion payment. If we don’t receive it, we will close their little show.”

Billon dollar lawsuits, drug lords, and hitmen bodyguards? Lady Dynamite is going through the exact same thing.

(Via The Hollywood Reporter)

Stranger Things Season 2 Will Put Eleven On An Emotional Rollercoaster

If you’re waiting around for Stranger Things Season 2 and are hoping for some tidbits to tide you over, Matt and Ross Duffer spoke with TVLine’s Michael Ausiellolast night at the Emmy Awards red carpet event. The creators and executive producers for the series teased a bit about the upcoming sophomore season for the Netflix hit series.

Stranger Things

Starting off, they talk about Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) and how her journey this season will be very different — besides the fact that she will have hair and be able to complete sentences. It’s going to be more of an emotional rollercoaster in the second season, as she will basically be going through adolescence while having powers.

They did confirm that there will be justice for Barb in the new season, but actress Shannon Purser will not be returning. Barb is dead; she’s not coming back and there won’t be flashbacks or ghost appearances. Barb will be talked about, but she’ll get no screen time. The Byers got Will (Noah Schnapp) back, but the Hollands didn’t get their daughter back, and we’ll get to see the repercussions from that with them and Nancy (Natalia Dyer).

As for as how long the series will go, don’t expect it to be around forever. They have a specific place in mind where they are going to end it, and they don’t feel that the story justifies that long of a run. Maybe four or five seasons at the most is the impression the Duffers give — definitely not six.

Don’t expect a big cliffhanger ending to the second season, either.

 Stranger Things Season 2 will debut October 27 on Netflix.


Justice League Will Feature Two Green Lanterns

2011’s Green Lantern is one of the most notorious superhero flops of the modern era. Originally conceived as Warner Bros.’ equivalent of Iron Man, the movie was intended to launch a DC cinematic universe. Unfortunately, it was rubbish from top to bottom and was hated by critics and shunned by fans.

Nowadays, Warner Bros. would probably prefer you pretend it didn’t happen, which is easy, as it’s a monumentally forgettable movie. Because of this, the studio has been rather coy about the Green Lantern Corps’ place in the DCEU, but now it’s being rumored that Justice League will reintroduce us to the emerald crusaders in style.

This comes courtesy of Heroic Hollywood and The Wrap’s Umberto Gonzales, who said the following (on his Inside Fanboy Periscope):

“In Justice League, there will be not one Green Lantern, but two Green Lanterns. Let’s see if it sticks and they keep them in or if they cut it out.”

Based on what we know of the already announced Green Lantern Corps (scheduled for summer 2020), a pair of Lanterns turning up in Justice League would make a good amount of sense. Word is that we’ll be seeing all the significant Green Lanterns from Earth in Corps, namely Hal Jordan, Kyle Rayner, John Stewart and Guy Gardner. Given the central position that they occupy in DC Comics and a number of excellent storylines that revolve around them, it’d seem like a no-brainer for DC to get its wheels spinning early and re-introduce audiences to the idea of the Corps.


At this point, it’s reasonable to think that at least Hal Jordan will appear in Justice League. After all, Geoff Johns is producing the DCEU movies and, as comic fans know all too well, Johns adores Hal Jordan above all other superheroes (for better or worse). But who could the second Lantern be? I’d say it’s a toss-up between Rayner and Stewart – with Stewart probably a smidge more likely.

Chalk that up as speculation for now, but one way or another, all will be revealed when Justice League opens on November 17th.


JEEPERS CREEPERS 3 Trailer #1 NEW Extended (2017) Horror

The LEGO Ninjago Movie – Featurette – Behind the Bricks

Jamie Foxx Preparing To Play Mike Tyson in New Motion Picture

Hollywood actor Jamie Foxx is preparing to play former undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson in a biopic of the controversial boxer.

The 49-year-old actor – who previously won an Academy Award for his portrayal of music star Ray Charles – has agreed a deal to star as the New York-born icon, whose career was blighted by numerous controversies.

A source said: ”Jamie went to a couple of sessions with his trainer in the gym for this movie. ‘He looked quite good throwing a few jabs and crosses against the pads. But when he tried a bit of sparring, he didn’t fare so well. ‘He took a couple of hooks and walked out. He knows if he wants to play Iron Mike then he needs to improve that side of his game.”

Legendary director Martin Scorsese is reportedly keen to helm the project, while Mike has also given Jamie a helping hand with his preparations.

The insider told The Sun newspaper: ”Mike knows it is Jamie’s dream to play him and they have talked about gym work and how he could put him through his paces.


”The only thing is that if they go sparring and Mike connects, Jamie may never make any movie again.”

MIke, 51, is still the youngest heavyweight champion in boxing history.

Some of his career controversies included failed marriage to actress Robin Givens, a 1992 rape conviction, and being temporarily banned from the sport in 1997 after the infamous rematch with Evander Holyfield – where Tyson was disqualified in the third round after biting off a piece of Holyfield’s ear.

Looking forward to the new movie, Mike recently admitted: ”A lot of people aren’t going to like the things I’ve done in my life.”